A Suhum Circuit Court has sentenced Ishmaila Salam, the presiding Imam of Mameng Community Mosque at Kwahyia in the Suhum Municipality to ten years imprisonment in hard labour for defiling a 12-year old girl.
Salam pleaded guilty to the charge and was convicted on his own plea by the Court presided over by Ms Effia Addison.
The prosecutor told the court that the complainant, Kwame Abu in his report to the police said the Imam who is a Nigerian Islamic preacher and a teacher at Masjid Ali Dawood Abu Zahriya, somewhere in 2020, started teaching his daughter who was attending Arabic studies at the said mosque.
The mother of the victim is said to have noticed changes in her daughter’s behaviour along the line and after being questioned by the complainant, the victim revealed that the accused person had been having sexual intercourse with her after their studies at the mosque.
On March 3, 2021, the complainant led the victim and the mother to the residence of the accused at Mameng to confront him. The accused is said to have admitted to the act and pleaded with the parents for forgiveness.
According to Daily Guide, the issue was said to have been taken up by some leaders of the mosque who sought to resolve the issue between the family and the accused, but the mediation is said to have failed.
A complaint was subsequently made at the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) Police Command in Suhum, leading to the arrest of the accused.
A medical form was issued to the victim and it was later confirmed that the accused had defiled her.
Investigations into the matter also established that the accused aside defiling the victim also used her and other minors for labour activities including the building of the said mosque.
The accused was thus charged and arraigned before court leading to his 10-year jail term.