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Saturday, November 27, 2021

I’m victim of Voodoo practice – Francis Xavier-Sosu

Madina MP

Member of Parliament for Madina, Francis Xavier-Sosu has revealed that he is a victim of ‘Voodoo’ practice.

Speaking on Sunday, on JoyNews’ The Law, the Lawyer stated that some marks on his face were inflicted through a cruel religious practice that was meted out to him under the ‘Trokosi system.’

“I have also been a victim of Voodoo practice. If you look carefully at my face, you’ll see marks and these are Voodoo marks. They are marks from a shrine,” he said.

“And these are shrines my mother and dad were all victims of through the Trokosi system,” he added.

The disclosure was made during discussions about a proposed bill that seeks to criminise the activities of witch doctors as well as sanction people who accuse others of practicing or engaging in witchcraft.

Mr Sosu, who has joined forces with the Sanneh Institute to push for this bill to be a reality, stated that the act that was inflicted on him years back, is one of his motivations for pushing for the bill.

“These are all part of religious beliefs that are inimical to the human being, reduce people’s confidence, and don’t promote growth in people,” he said.

The MPs have introduced a Private Members’ Bill to amend the Criminal and Other Offences Act 1960 (Act 29) to prohibit the practice by any person as a witch doctor or witchfinder.

The sponsors are MPs for Madina, Pusiga, and Wa East Constituencies, Francis-Xavier Kojo Sosu, Hajia Laadi Ayii Ayamba, and Dr. Godfred Seidu Jasaw respectively.

The bill is expected to also proscribe the declaration, accusation, naming or labeling of another person as a witch; to prohibit a person from employing or soliciting anyone to accuse, name, label, indicate, or declare another person as a witch and provide for related matters.

Over the years, the lack of knowledge and education has resulted in some of our people being extremely vulnerable, especially the aged and uninformed, particularly old women. Adult persons, weakened by age and reeling from senility or dementia or both, often say outrageous things, and are then intimidated, brow-beaten, and coerced into admitting being witches; often acquiescing out of sheer frustration.

Children, who may have exhibited weird signs in one way or the other have not been spared such accusations.

Consequently, the proponents of this bill are seeking to end cruel practices meted out to victims of these accusations.

During the show, the Executive Director of the Sanneh Institute, Prof John Azumah, who is among the proponents of the bill indicated that consultations with priests have often revealed that these accusations are false.

The Lawyer, who condemned the act, further noted that the bill is to hold people accountable for their actions.

“Particularly when it comes to the accusations of witchcraft, it is one of the most deplorable situations you can ever have in our casual setting.” Hence, “the bill seeks to hold people accountable for their actions.

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