A Circuit Court in Wa presided over by His Honour Mr Jonathan Avogo has sentenced Rashid Ahmed, alias Anaata, a popular Master of Ceremony (MC) for Islamic weddings, to 22 years imprisonment in hard labour after he was found guilty of defilement. The court said though Rashid Ahmed, aged about 35 years, had denied having sex with the minors, the court found him guilty of the counts of defilement, attempted defilement, and indecent assault after the case had gone through full trial. The court gave the sentence on three out of the four dockets built in the case while the fourth was arrested. In the first docket, which involved three survivors and six counts, Rashid Ahmed was sentenced to eight years imprisonment on the first count and seven years imprisonment on each of the remaining five counts to run concurrently. Rashid Ahmed was also sentenced to seven years imprisonment in the second docket, which involved three survivors, and seven years imprisonment in the third docket involving one survivor. Mr Avogo, before pronouncing the judgment, said there was sufficient evidence that Rashid Ahmed had committed the defilement to which he was being held. He said he decided to summarise the issues in the cases because if he mentioned all some mothers in the court would cry. Mr Avogo mentioned that in one of the instances, the survivor said Rashid Ahmed took them to a rock on a bushy area and made them hold the carrier of his motorbike, bent down, and had sex with them from behind. He added that one of the survivors said she knew 17 of her friends who had also been defiled by the accused person, now a convict but their parents did not allow them to testify in court. Mr Avogo said the girls agreed to have sex with the accused person, now a convict for them to get food to eat. Mr Saeed Abdul Shakur, a Principal State attorney in the Upper West Region and the lead prosecutor in the case, said he was happy about the decision of the court because it would deter other people from indulging in such acts. He said he was, however, saddened by the atrocities meted out to the survivors of the defilement and said they needed rehabilitation services. ‘The court did a thorough job and we are happy about the judgment, but when I look at the girls, I really feel sad. I wish to use this medium to appeal to anybody who might be interested in helping rehabilitate those girls to do so,’ Mr Shakur indicated. He commended Mr Illiasu Baba, the complainant in the defilement case for the bold step he took to file the complaint with the police, which had helped serve justice to the survivors. He also commended the parents of the survivors who allowed their children who suffered the abuse by Rashid Ahmed to testify in court. Mr Illiasu Baba, the complainant, said he was happy with the outcome of the case because it was to let the public know that what Rashid Ahmed had done was bad and that many people would learn from it, and it would serve as a deterrent to others.
Source: Ghana News Agency