The untold story

Ghana: “Where old age is not welcome”

In Northern Ghana, elderly women accused of being witches have been forcibly banished to a place where they must live under deplorable conditions. The existence of the Gambaga witch Camp says as much as how Ghanaians view elderly women as their fear of being affected by witchcraft.

It all sounds so troubling and disturbing. For the second time in four years, more old women have been accused of being witches and banished to live for the rest of their lives at a witch camp in Gambaga, a small town in the northern region of Ghana.

Witch Hunts Of Women In Ghana (Clip from C|NET CBS News):

The Gambaga Witch Camp, as it is popularly called, first attracted national attention when inmates voiced out the deplorable conditions under which they were living. The inmates, numbering several hundred, found their way to the camp through no fault of theirs. In a society where people refuse to face realities, but are quick to blame their failures on others, witches can be made out of everybody.

Ghanaians – and for that matter, many Africans – believe that not all death is natural, and are quick to blame certain deaths on supernatural forces. For instance, it is a common belief among some ethnic groups that it is normal when an elderly person dies because he/she might have achieved his/her purpose in this world. But a young person’s death is considered premature and attributed to some causes. Family members, and in some cases the entire community, then set about trying to unravel the mystery surrounding the death.

In many instances, young people have blamed others for the lack of progress in their businesses, marriages, and failure to obtain visas to travel abroad. Elderly people, mostly women, have been wrongly accused, beaten up, and chased out of their communities.

CFA is working to change this!


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