Former First Lady and Founder of the December 31 Women’s Movement, Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings, has called on Ghanaians to help protect the aged as senior citizens instead of tagging them as witches and wizards.
She said the aged were a repository of knowledge who, when supported, could live long and share their experiences with the younger generation.
Mrs Rawlings, therefore, expressed her readiness to lend support to St Theresa of the Child Jesus, a special organisation within the Catholic Church in Kumasi which caters for the aged, and appealed to Ghanaians to contribute towards the upkeep of the aged.
The organisation, presided over by Obaapanin Georgina Adepa Konadu Kusi, focuses more on members in the Catholic Church, providing for more than 100 of them.
At a fundraising ceremony in Kumasi to mark the golden jubilee of the organisation, the former first lady said the money was to help build a new home for the aged and to cater for their needs.
“The idea of raising funds in aid of the old people is a good one and needs to be supported… This will, no doubt, give some hope to our older fathers and mothers,” she said.
She cited the Northern and Volta regions for leading in isolating the aged, with some women being tagged as witches and put in witch camps.
Mrs Rawlings said in the 21st century such practices needed to be discouraged and the older people given help.
She applauded the entire management team of the St Theresa of the Child Jesus for the thought and extolled in particular Obaapanin Konadu Kusi for her virtue and compassion.
Obaapanin Konadu Kusi said the role of the aged in the society could not be over-emphasised because they offered good counsel and direction to the younger generation.
She, therefore, said it was time the aged were celebrated while they were alive and not when they were dead and gone.