A video of the chaplain of St Monica’s College of Education kissing three female students has gone viral on social media, and has generated a lot of reactions from Ghanaians.
The Anglican priest who has been identified as Balthazar Obeng Larbi, is seen in the video kissing each girl on the lips on the podium while the congregation of students screamed and hailed with excitement.
Many Ghanaians have condemned the action of the priest and have, therefore, called for an investigation into the matter.
Meanwhile, the Internal Province of Ghana Anglican Communion has also condemned the actions of the priest.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, August 17, 2021, the Executive Director to the Metropolitan Archbishop of Ghana, Dr George Dawson-Ahmoah indicated that an investigation has begun into the matter.
The statement also indicated that the said priest, if found culpable will be dealt with in accordance with the norms and values of the Anglican Communion.
“The Church is saddened by the news and wish to state expressly that, a thorough investigation has immediately been instituted into the matter and the action of the said Priest would be dealt with in accordance with the norms and values of the Anglican Communion where morality is extremely revered in the Church,” the statement read.
According to a report by Joy News’ Ohemeng Tawiah on Luv FM, the priest has been relieved of his duties and is no longer the chaplain and lawyer of the school, while counselling sessions have begun for the three female students.
Furthermore, African Education Watch has petitioned the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission to investigate the actions of the priest in the viral video, while condemning the act.
“The alleged act is in blatant disregard for established Covid-19 protocols which the perpetrator is responsible for rather ensuring adherence as a leader in the school.”
“We are by this letter petitioning your office to conduct an external investigation into the conduct of father Balthazar Obeng Larbi and sanction appropriately while pronouncing on whether or not the practice of kissing students in public is acceptable conduct in a tertiary institution,” the statement added.
If the priest is eventually found culpable of the act and is to be punished according to the laws of Ghana, he could face imprisonment.
In Ghana, sexual assaults of any form including rape, defilement, unnatural carnal knowledge and harassment are regarded as serious offences (i.e. first-degree felony), that are liable on conviction to a term of imprisonment not less than five years and not more than 25 years (Criminal Offences Act 1960, Act 29; Criminal and Other Offences (Procedure) Act 1960, Act 30).
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