International Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), Defence for Children International (DCI) is pushing for the prosecution of teachers who are found culpable of sexual harassment on their female students, instead of the usually feeble punishments meted out by the Ghana Education Service (GES) to offending instructors.
The NGO is of the view that, transfers, interdictions and transfers of teachers who sexually abuse their female students are not deterrent enough and have therefore called for harsher punishments, including jail terms.
Speaking at a stakeholders meeting to commemorate the International Day of the Girl Child under the theme, “with her, a skilled girl force-reducing child marriage and sexual violence in Ghana”, in Kumasi today, the Board Chairman and President of the Ghana Chapter of DCI and Chief of Gomoa Odumasi, Nana Akomanyi Essandoh V faulted the GES for not doing much to ensure the issue of sexual harassment in schools is stopped in Ghana.
The ace broadcast journalist also insisted no teacher should be treated kindly when found to have engaged in the harassment of any of their female students but rather be made to face the full brunt of the laws of Ghana.
In Ghana, a person could be prosecuted under the Domestic Violence Act, 2007 (Act 732) for abusing their influence on children unduly in order to sexually gratify themselves; They could also be culpable under Act 732 for the harm they have caused children.
Defence for Children International (DCI) is an independent non-governmental organisation set up during the International Year of the Child (1979) to ensure on-going, practical, systematic and concerted international and national action specially directed towards promoting and protecting the rights of the child, as articulated in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). Nigel Cantwell was one of its founders and its current president is Mr Abdul Manaff Kemokai of Sierra Leone.
DCI is therefore active on a global, regional, national and local level. On a global level it focuses its efforts on lobbying, child rights advocacy, monitoring of the implementation of the UNCRC by State Parties and acting as a facilitator for the exchange of information and experience of its national sections. The national sections work on various child rights issues, adapting their focus to the specific needs of the children in their respective countries. Their main areas of work are child labour, juvenile justice, child prostitution, children in armed conflict and child rights’ education.