Flashback: Some accused women at the Kpatinga camp
Flashback: Some accused women at the Kpatinga camp

Inmates in witch camps want reintegration — Survey report

About 70 per cent of inmates at the various alleged witch camps in the Northern and North East regions interviewed during a recent survey have indicated their willingness to be reintegrated into society.

The purpose of the research was to determine the level of depression prevalence in the inmates of the camps, explore the gender dimensions and seek the views of stakeholders for the possible reintegration processes.

The research conducted in partnership with Songtaba, Basic Needs Ghana, Options Health and Inclusive Limited, all non-governmental organisations (NGOs), among other partners, is to provide a compelling document on the prevalence of depression among the women and the need for duty bearers to act in order to meet their health needs.

The study took place in the Kukuo, Gnani and Kpatinga alleged witches camps in the Nanumba South District, Yendi and Gushegu municipalities all in the Northern region and Gambaga camp in the East Mamprusi municipality of the North East region.

Two hundred and seventy-seven inmates in the four alleged witches camps were interviewed during the exercise.


Speaking at a stakeholders meeting in in Tamale to validate the research findings, A Senior Lecturer at the University of Ghana School of Public Health and lead principal investigator of the research team, Dr Philip Tengnefaah Tabong, said the study revealed that quality of life of the inmates has been compromised psychologically, socially, physically and environmentally representing 23 per cent.

He indicated that about 52 per cent of the inmates have some form of depression while 70 per cent have mild to moderate and severe depression.

" The women we interviewed in terms of our study, about 70 per cent indicated their willingness to be reintegrated into the society", Dr Tabong said.

The Executive Director of Songtaba,Hajia Lamnatu Adam, on her part, said it was necessary that government and other relevant stakeholders took into consideration the emerging incidence of depression among inmates at the camps in order to draw comprehensive policies and programmes geared towards improving their livelihood and social inclusion.

She added that the technical expertise of stakeholders was crucial in ensuring that the research findings received the needed critiques in preparing a solid document for onward implementation.

“This meetings offers us the opportunity to validate the research findings for onward broader stakeholder forum for dissemination," she said.


The Grant Advisor, Options Health and Inclusive Limited, Mr Mathias Akuliga Aneinini, called for more stakeholders' engagement in terms of dissemination and smooth implementation in order to minimize the plight of the inmates towards building a more inclusive society devoid of the incidence of abuse and discrimination.

The Participants called for re-integration strategies through education and advocacy, collaboration with key stakeholders’ enforcement of laws and adequate budgetary allocations to the various camps.


The meeting was to offer stakeholders the opportunity to key in their input on the research findings in order to determine the prevalence of depression and understand the gender dimensions of women accused of witchcraft in the two regions.

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