Six women across the globe die every hour due to gender-based violence. This was revealed by Dr. Ruth Owusu Antwi who is the Head of the Psychiatry Department at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital. She made this known during a forum on gender-based violence organised by AngloGold Ashanti Obuasi Mine at Cofkans Hotel in Obuasi.
Dr. Ruth Owusu Antwi, who is also a lecturer at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, added that gender-based violence is more disturbing because it involves two adults.
“What makes gender-based violence disturbing is that, it is between two adults who know what is right and wrong but one decides to lord himself or herself over the other. Many women have ended up at psychiatric hospitals due to depression from gender-based violence. Some also suffer from anxiety disorders” she said.
“If we are able to deal with gender based violence, it goes a long way to prevent various forms of illnesses” she added.
She also cautioned that children of abusive parents also grow up to become abusive hence gender-based violence sets bad precedents for children to imitate.
ASP Gyamerah Akenten, the Crime Officer at the Ghana Police Service of the Obuasi Division, who was also part of the panel discussion also advised women to speak out and report violent partners.
“During creation, God made Eve for Adam because God knew man alone can not survive without a woman. But why is it that there are so many abuses in marriages; husbands beating wives and women pouring acid on their husbands” he asked.
“Sometimes If you report your violent partner to the police, they will tell you to go and settle it at home. So many women are harboring abuses from their partners. Women should speak out about violence committed against them in their marriages” he added.
The Obuasi Sub-regional director of The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Mr. Samuel Asante Yeboah, also revealed that there are different kinds of gender-based violence but the most talked about is the physical violence. But there are also the psychological, emotional and sexual kinds.
“The most worrying kind of gender-based violence is the sexual violence. This is killing young girls silently” he said.
“In sexual violence, there is rape and there is defilement. Defilement is the act of sleeping with a girl below 16 years and it goes with a minimum sentence of 7 years and a maximum of 25years. Rape is also the act of sleeping with someone above 16 years but without his/her consent. This goes with a minimum sentence of 5 years and a maximum sentence of 25 years” he added.
He therefore advised women to be vigilant and detect early signs that a partner could be abusive since this could prevent the situation from getting worse.
Mr. Edmund Oduro-Agyei, the Superintendent of Stakeholder Engagement at the AngloGold Ashanti Obuasi Mine, who spoke on behalf of the Mine said the Mine is doing its best to stop all forms of violence against women among employees of the Mine.
“For us, it is STOP VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN NOW among us and our employees. We are not only sensitizing our workers and others against it but also walking the talk” he said.
Annually, the United Nations (UN), Governments, Civil society and private organisations across the world unite to mark 16 days of activism against gender-based violence. This year’s commemoration was scheduled for 25th November to 10th December, 2021. In support of the global initiative, AngloGold Ashanti Ghana Limited organised the event to create awareness, promote advocacy and educate community members on ending gender-based violence in the society.
The event brought together community members and traditional leaders including the Adansihemaa Nana Amoanimaa Dede II and Akrokerrihemaa, Nana Serwaa Buruwaa II.