It is a law enforcement standard that criminal cases such as defilement and rape are for courts to adjudicate and not committees of enquiry set up by agencies such as the Ghana Education Service (GES) and the like. They are beyond such ad hoc committees.
Information from Tamale suggests that a committee of enquiry has been set up to probe the case of an alleged rape of a student of the Tamale Senior High School (Tamasco), a story which we carried in two previous editions.
As a criminal case, all that the GES can do is to assist the law enforcement agency undertake their investigation to establish the culpability or otherwise of the suspect. This can only be done when the suspect is apprehended and taken through the processes of investigation. For us, therefore, the committee set up in Sagnarigu to investigate the allegation has no mandate to do what it intends to do. The police are already primed with a medical report which indicates that the female student was raped, with the torn hymen and blood stain alluding to that fact. This makes the matter a pure police case and not a committee. What matters now is to link the suspect to the crime and then have a court of competent jurisdiction take over.
A state agency such as the regional office of the GES should not be seen to be acting in contravention of the law or standard. Much as we appreciate the efforts of the regional directorate in dealing with the matter, we would be quick to add that this is a purely law enforcement affair.
And now to the regional command of the police in Tamale; we cannot understand why to date the suspect has not been apprehended.
We are not oblivious to the inconveniences and even pressure the interference by so-called opinion leaders and even chiefs are exacting upon them but this is about law and the abuse of an innocent girl vis a vis the law. The girl, obsessed with pursuing her academic dream and vulnerable as she is, was preyed upon girl, and even as we compose this commentary she is battling with lethargy and depression.
What would the impression of the girl about adults and teachers into whose hands innocent persons like her are entrusted to and law enforcement authorities who are expected to protect them be now and throughout her life? That is why we demand that the suspect be smoked out regardless of the pressure being brought to bear upon the cops.
Letting the poor girl down is showing disrespect to both womanhood and the laws of the land.
We are surprised that no female grouping has taken up the matter of the abused Tamale girl yet. We shall continue to monitor this story until justice is served.