Gideon D.Ebbah, GNA
Bonwire (Ash), Dec. 5, GNA - A traditional ruler has blamed the increasing health problems affecting adolescent and teenage girls in the country on the neglect of culture and traditions that were used to protect and promote the virtuous development of girls before initiating them into adulthood.
Nana Nyarko Frimponmaah, Queen of Bonwire in the Ejisu Municipality, said the rise in teenage pregnancies, abortions, HIV/AIDS infections amongst young girls were due to the neglect and sidelining of traditions such as puberty rites (“bragoro”), which sought to prepare young girls properly before they attained womanhood.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency at Bonwire on the importance of “bragoro” which is being featured prominently on this year’s Bonwire Kente festival celebrations, Nana Frimpong said the tradition is still useful and significant in protecting the health and physical wellbeing of the young girl, while promoting self-control, moral values and sacrifice in the transition to adulthood.
She said the chiefs and elders of Bonwire, the original birthplace of the kente cloth were determined to revive the “bragoro” tradition, sustain and promote it among girls in the area to help them grow to become virtuous women who would uphold the values of their families and society.
Nana Frimponmaah said four young girls would be initiated this year as part of the one-week festival, which is expected to end on December 9, this year, and urged other traditional rulers to revive the tradition to help protect the growth and development of their young girls.
She said there is the need for stakeholders in the promotion of the welfare and development of girls to intensify efforts to reduce abuses and discrimination against young girls, while helping to promote traditional systems that seeks to enhance their proper upbringing.
Nana Frimponmaah urged parents to take keen interest in the growth and development of their girl-child since they are the foundation of the family and society.