DOVVSU gets interview rooms

Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service has commissioned three “Women and Children’s Interview Rooms” to give privacy to survivors of domestic violence in telling their stories.

The rooms, commissioned at Ashaiman, Madina and Kasoa, were fixed with support from UNICEF and Global Affairs Canada.

Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Frederick K. Agyei, Deputy Director General, CID, commissioning the rooms, said in 2020 alone, 1,047 girls were defiled, and 305 women raped.

He said, while they recognised that the figures were only reported cases, they presented “a huge source of worry because the actual numbers can be extremely disturbing.”

Mr. Agyei called for the need to focus on the root causes of violence founded on gender-based power inequalities and gender-based discrimination.

“This is the reason why the Ghana Police Service has taken the first step to ensure that women and girls can speak to us the Police in a manner that improves their experiences and increases their access to justice,” he stated.

Mr. Agyei said the primary focus of the Police would continue to include first and fore-most the prevention of violence against all persons and improve response services for survivors.

The Deputy Director General said violence against women remained widespread across the world, exacerbated by traditions and customary practices that determined the way women were treated in families, places of work and communities, adding that Ghana was not an exception.

“It is a violation of their rights and remains a health issue that cuts across boundaries of economic wealth, culture, religion, age, and sexual orientation,” he said.

He said while Gender-Based Violence (GBV) disproportionally affected women and girls, it also affected men and boys.

Mr. Agyei said wherever GBV occurred, it was a major obstacle for the achievement of gender justice, posing a serious threat to democratic development, public health and a critical barrier to achieving Sustainable Development Goals.

He said, “If women, girls, men and boys are not safe, they cannot be full citizens or fully participate in the development of our society.

Chief Superintendent of Police, Owusua Kyere, Director of DoVVSU, thanked UNICEF and Global Affairs Canada, for their support to Ghanaian women and children.

Madam Anne Claire Dufay, Country Director for UNICEF, said there was the need for a forensic laboratory for DOVVSU and a free medical examination for victims of domestic violence.

Ms. Sarah Cohen of Global Affairs Canada, pledged her Institution’s support to protect survivors and ensure they got justice on time.

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