The Buipe police have arrested 37 people for allegedly torturing a 70-year-old woman at Sankpala whom they accused of being a witch.
According to the police, seven of the suspects are alleged to have subjected the woman to severe beatings and also inflicted machete wounds on her in a bid to get her to confess to the allegation.
The 30 others, according to the police, were arrested for preventing the police from arresting the seven persons who tortured the victim when her family members reported the matter to the Kawsugu Wura (the Paramount Chief of Kawsugu) to settle the issue.
When the chief, realised that the matter was a criminal case, he called in the police to effect the arrest of the suspects.
The name of the prime suspect in the case was given by the police as Nashrudeen Mohammed, who is alleged, to have inflicted the machete wounds on the woman because he was not satisfied with her confessions. The victim is a resident of Sankpala, a farming community on the Tamale-Buipe highway.
The matchete wounds on the back of the victim
The Buipe Deputy Police Commander, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), Mr Kwame Boadi, who briefed the Daily Graphic in an interview, said at about 9 p.m. on March 31, 2016, the seven suspects, led by Mohammed, entered the room of the victim while she was sleeping, dragged her out and subjected her to severe beatings to compel her to confess to being a witch.
He said not satisfied with what the victim told them, Mohammed inflicted machete wounds on her. Her family members came to her rescue and sent her to the hospital.
Mr Boadi said on April 1, 2016, the victim’s family reported the matter to the chief of Kawsugu, who called the parties involved for a hearing on April 2, 2016. It was during the hearing that the chief called in the police, leading to the arrest of the 37 people, including the seven who subjected the victim to torture.
The Northern Regional Police Public Relations Officer (PRO), ASP Mr Ebenezer Tetteh, when contacted, also confirmed the incident and said the suspects would be put before court today.
He said seven of the suspects, who were arrested for subjecting the woman to torture, had been charged with causing harm and conspiracy to commit crime while the other 30 had been charged for obstructing the police in their work.