NGO advocates for respect of sexual rights

By
Paul Achonga Kwode, GNA

Tamale, Aug 28, GNA
– The Human Rights Advocacy Centre (HRAC), a human rights civil society
organisation, has urged couples and the general public to respect each other’s
sexual rights to promote a healthy and responsible society.

Ms Wendy Abbey, the
Technical Advisor to (HRAC), said the state must create the enabling conditions
to enhance respect for sexual rights of all persons so as to prevent violence
and associated deaths occasioned through disrespect for sexual rights.

Ms Abbey said this
at a monitoring and evaluation workshop in Tamale organised by HRAC to
strengthen civil society advocacy and monitoring on sexual and reproductive
health rights in Ghana.

She said people had
the rights to equality and to be free from discrimination on grounds of sex and
gender and that the sexual life of a woman was taken into consideration in
deciding the extent of her legal rights and protection.

Ms Abbey underscored
the need for improved training for health workers as well as law enforcement
agencies to respect the rights of victims of sexual violation and empathise
with them during periods of distress.

She called for a
total ban on female genital mutilation, child marriages and betrothal of boys
and girls noting that such practices were at variance with modern standards of
living.

She said measures
must also be put in place to prevent workplace sexual harassments since it was
an affront to workers’ dignity.

Mrs Harriet
Nottinson Asante, the Acting Executive Director of Ghana Coalition of NGOs in
Health, said it was the prerogative of the Government to provide conditions for
young people to promote responsible lifestyles for the sustenance of generations
yet unborn.

She said sexual and
reproductive health and rights were issues of global and national concern
because they were core to human existence.

Mrs Asante urged the
state to legalise abortion to enable people who got pregnant without their will
to be able to terminate the pregnancy.

She said there were
several circumstances that abortion was required explaining that in cases where
the pregnancy occurred through rape and incest, abortion could be allowed
because of the circumstances of the pregnancy.

GNA

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