Saturday, 20 April

'It's ignorance!' – Gborbu shrine fights off calls for 63-year-old priest's arrest for marrying 12-year-old virgin girl

L-R: 63-year-old Gborbu Wulomo, Nuumo Borketey Laweh Tsuru XXXIII, and 12-year-old girl, Naa Yomo Ayemuade

The recent marriage of 63-year-old Gborbu Wulomo, Nuumo Borketey Laweh Tsuru XXXIII, to a 12-year-old girl, Naa Yomo Ayemuade, is of "deep" spiritual significance to the people of Nungua, the spokesperson for the shrine, Nii Bortey Kofi Frankwa II, has told the press.

He told journalists on Monday, 1 April 2024, that critics calling for the priest's arrest and prosecution for marrying a minor are doing so out of ignorance.

The 20 March 2024 traditional ceremony set social media agog with critics accusing the priest of paedophilia.

The shrine, however, explained to journalists that the girl's virginity is critical and central to her designated role of performing spiritual rites involving one of the 99 deities of the Ga-Dangme people.

He said it was, therefore, important that the marriage ceremony was performed publicly to ward off potential male suitors, so her chastity is kept intact since only a virgin could perform her designated role.

In light of this, he described the criticisms and arrest calls as founded in ignorance.

"When somebody makes such a call, it comes from a point of ignorance because, first, you need to come closer and ask so that you will appreciate what it is but not take hook line, and sinker what is being said," he told journalists at the press conference, explaining: "Because it goes beyond what is being preached out there. It is deeper than what is being preached. It is deeper for our spirituality."

Meanwhile, the Chief of Sempe and Mankralo of the Ga State, Nii Adotey Otintor II, condemned the marriage by the priest.

He told Accra-based Joy News that the youth of the area must rise against the spiritual union.

Also, the Chieftaincy Ministry has also launched a probe into the matter.