The case of a 13-year old girl, who was defiled in November last year, but has still not been prosecuted because her parents cannot afford an amount of GH¢300 demanded by a medical doctor at the Upper East Regional hospital, Bolgatanga, before he would conduct a medical examination on her.
Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Veronica Obese, Second In-Command at the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Upper East Regional Police Command, told journalists in Bolgatanga that the mother of the victim only reported the case at her office on February 2, 2017, four months after the incident took place at Namolgo, a farming community in the Talensi District.
According to the police officer, the mother of the victim (name withheld), reported to them that she had seen a video recording in which her daughter was defiled and upon interrogating her, she confessed and named the suspects. The suspects are two brothers.
ASP Obese said the matter was first reported at the Gbane police station, leading to the arrest of one of the suspects.
The arrested suspect (name withheld) was said to be a juvenile at the time of the incident. She said when the suspect was interrogated he confessed to the crime and revealed that it was his elder brother, Akwesi Zamnok (now on the run), who masterminded the crime.
He told the police that, he and his brother were riding on a motorbike in the evening, when they met the victim, who had been sent to the market square to buy some items.
The victim, whose friend is the girlfriend of Zamnok, enquired from him the whereabouts of her friend.
It was then that Zamnok offered to give her a lift and send her to his girlfriend’s house, which she agreed.
On their way, Zamnok stopped and ordered his brother and the victim to get down from the motorbike. When they did, he further ordered them to undress, lie on the ground and have sex. Both resisted, but Zamnok allegedly slapped them until they obliged.
When they finally undressed and the innocent suspect mounted the victim, Zamnok supervised and also filmed the act.
In the video recording, which lasted for 2 minutes and 12 seconds, Zamnok, whose face is not shown on the video, is heard coaching his inexperienced brother how to penetrate the victim, while the teenage girl wails in excruciating pain and plead for mercy, but Zamnok was unbending.
Rather, he continued to instigate his brother to bonk the girl who laid flat on her back in the bush and struggled to free herself, but to no avail. Zamnok insisted that his brother continued until he reaches orgasm.
ASP Obese said when a police medical form was issued to the victim for a medical examination at the Upper East Regional Hospital in Bolgatanga, the doctor who was to examine the girl demanded an amount of GH¢300 before he would examine her.
Unfortunately, the parents of the victim could not raise the said amount. She said not even the intervention by the social welfare department of the hospital and the administrator could convince the doctor to examine the poor victim for free or for future settlement of the bill.
As a result, when the police presented the facts of the case at the court, the court could not proceed to look into the case, because it needed a medical proof that indeed the victim was defiled.
She also said the age of the boy who defiled the girl could not be established though the boy claimed he was 17 years old at the time of the incident, which also contributed to the court not been able to continue with the case.
According to ASP Obese, the docket of the case has since been forwarded to the office of the Attorney-General for advice, while surveillance aimed at clamping down on Zamnok is underway.