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SheHUB Ghana: High ranking Police officer encourages young women to report social media sexual harassment

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Chief Superintendent of Police Sophia Eva Ennim of the Formed Police Unit of the Ghana Police Service advised girls to report all forms of harassment and abuse from people on social media to the Police. She says harassment and abuse, including insults, threats, and blackmail could cause emotional trauma and depression.

Chief Supt Ennim shared this with 60 girls and young women as part of the celebrations of this year’s Girls in ICT Day, which was hosted by the MTN Ghana Foundation in collaboration with Mobile Web-Ghana.

“Girls in ICT Day” was instituted by the International Telecommunications Union, and celebrated annually to encourage girls and young women to pursue studies and careers in Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

This year’s celebratory theme was ‘‘Access and Safety.’’

Chief Supt Ennim notes that it was an offence for one to harass and abuse another on social media, hence, the need to report to the Police. She says some of the girls who were harassed on social media were scared but unaware of the assistance they could be provided when they reported such issues to the right authorities.

“Make your parents your friends. Be open and report every social media harassment you may experience to them,’’ she advises.

Chief Supt Ennim says some of the girls blamed themselves for the abuses and harassment since they might have initiated and entertained the perpetrators, thus, they would rather be shy and secretive about them and suffer.

She urges them to desist from entertaining strangers on social media and block them if they felt harassed.Chief Supt Ennim calls on young women and girls to be careful and vigilant as they use social media including the kind of content they [post].

She hints that some ladies were denied jobs, although they were qualified because of the indecent content they posted on their social media pages.

Chief Supt Ennim reiterates the Police’s commitment to eradicating illicit behaviour on the internet: “We the police are on course in clamping down cyberbullies.”