It appears organizations who advocate for the removal of the stigma associated with disability has a lot to do–disability turns out to be a stigma in many part of the world. Unfortunately, our dear nation Ghana is not omitted from this list when it comes to the isolation, the neglect and discrimination against people with disabilities.
This report by the Ghana News Agency really saddens my heart and I think the death of a one- and-a half-year-old baby who was needlessly killed by the mother could have been avoided if the residents and family members have known better.
According to GNA, the frustrated 20- year- old Mother, Ms Ayishetu Fuseini, at Garu-Duri in the Upper East Region on Friday allegedly killed her one- and- a- half- year- old baby because of the child’s disabilities and stigmatization by family members.
The culprit told the police that “she got pregnant out of marriage in Kumasi where she had gone to do menial work but the man responsible for the pregnancy denied responsibility so she had to go back home to have the baby.”
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She said when the child was born family members started harassing her to identify the father of the child and as she could not do so they insulted and pointed fingers at her until she could not take it anymore.
“I became frustrated and did not know how I could support myself and the child as I am unemployed, so I decided to end the life of the baby since the community and family members were not prepared to stay with a child without a father,” she said.
Mr Dasmani Abduliah, a resident in the area, told the Ghana News Agency in Garu that Ms Fuseini stayed with her parents in Duri and on August 28 when members of the family had left for work, she took the baby to one of the rooms in the house and cut her throat with a knife, killing her.
He said the incident shocked the entire community as it was the first of its kind in the area, more so as Ms Fuseini was not known to have a mental problem.
Assistant Superintendent of Police Christian Dogbatse, in charge of the Garu-Tempane District confirmed the incident and said the suspect had been kept in police custody pending investigation.
He cautioned the people to desist from taking such drastic measures in times of difficulties since they could always seek counsel from religious leaders and elders in their communities.
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