Accra Mail (Accra)

5 October 2001

Ghana: Country in Sex Trade

Three years ago, Ghanaians were stunned when it was revealed in the media that Ghanaian girls had become darlings of the Internet not as whiz kids of cyber space, but as purveyors of body parts, sexual, that is. A national manhunt led to the provincial town of Swedro where a ring masterminding the sale of naked Ghanaian females on the Internet was discovered.

Currently on sale at postcard stands in the nation's capital is a series called "COLOURS OF GHANA" portraying women purported to be Ghanaians in different stages of nakedness. A close scrutiny of the pictures however raises issues of authenticity, motive and "sexploitation". Clearly, Ghana is being presented on those cards as a destination for sex tourism.

Sex tourism, which inevitably ends in sexploitation is rampant in developing countries and in the developed countries, female economic migrants normally end in the seedier sides of the sex trade. Today Ghanaian girls stranded abroad, turn to that trade to eke out a living. This probably accounts for the reason why the "COLOURS OF GHANA" postcards have tried to sell Ghana internationally as a place to gorge on women's nakedness.

In a related story, The Accra Mail received an e-mail two days ago from a reader resident in one of our ECOWAS neighbours lamenting how Ghanaians, amongst other problems have been caught in the sexploitation vicious cycle. The short message is presented below:

"I am a Ghanaian living in Cameroon and I wish to inform you about the way Ghanaians behave here. Most of the Ghanaians who are here are uneducated and they don't know why they are here. They pass most of their time in "ashaho" houses and the little money they earn is spent there. Moreover, they are the drunkards of this country.

They do not have any union or embassy, so most of them who are caught by the immigration die inside prison. In fact, last year eight of them were buried in Douala. Four of them were HIV victims. Try to tell your people to travel with an aim. Thank you."

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