The Mental Health Authority(MHA) has appealed to residents of Mankessim in the Mfantseman Municipality of the Central Region to exercise restraint over threats to set mentally ill persons ablaze.

A statement issued by the Mental Health Authority on Tuesday, November 16 ,2O21 advised locals to use better ways of resolving the so-called nuisance caused by the persons with severe mental illness (PWSMI) in Mankessim instead of resorting to violence.

”The MHA believes there are better ways of resolving such incidents than calling for the death of these very vulnerable persons, ”  the Mental Health Authority noted in its statement.

This comes on the back of threats by some angry residents of Mankessim in the Mfantseman Municipality of the Central Region to set some mentally ill persons ablaze after accusing them of taking over the Municipality.

According to market women in the area, the individuals who loiter about in the municipality always steal their foodstuffs in the night when they close.

“Mentally disabled people break the stores and steal our foodstuffs and the items we sell here in the market.

Therefore, we will also set them ablaze if we catch them,” a market woman told Starr FM’s Yaw Boagyan in an interview.
Some residents also blamed the psychiatric hospitals in the Central Region for always dumping mentally ill patients in the Mankessim market.

Meanwhile, the MHA assured it is earnestly working to liaise with the Municipal/District authorities and the Ankaful Psychiatric Hospital to gradually take these persons from the streets and marketplaces in Mankessim for treatment and rehabilitation.

“This, we know will be a more sustainable intervention that should protect lives of these PWSMI as well as the properties of citizens in the Mankessim area,”  MHA said in its statement.

Read the full statement below:
MENTAL HEALTH AUTHORITY
PRESS RELEASE
For immediate release.
16th November 2021.
RE: MANKESSIM RESIDENTS THREATEN TO SET ABLAZE MENTALLY ILL PATIENTS.
The Mental Health Authority’s (MHA) attention has been drawn to a publication on Ghanaweb, originally published by a Starrfm reporter on their online portal of purported plans by the good people of Mankessim to set ablaze persons with severe mental illness (PWSMI) in the Mankessim Municipality.
This, we see as a desperate attempt to stop the ‘nuisance’ purportedly caused by the PWSMI in the market places who they claim have been burgling their wares at night when they have left the markets. The MHA believes there are better ways of resolving such incidents than calling for the death of these very vulnerable persons.
In the wake of these circumstances, the Authority will want to plead with the citizens of Mankessim and its environs to exercise restraint and rather link up with the Municipal or District Chief Executives of their respective areas for an acceptable solution within the confines of the law and with regards to human rights.

That having been said, the MHA is earnestly working to liaise with the Municipal/District authorities and the Ankaful Psychiatric Hospital to gradually take these persons from the streets and market places in Mankessim for treatment and rehabilitation. This, we know will be a more sustainable intervention that should protect lives of these PWSMI as well as the properties of citizens in the Mankessim area.
We, therefore, plead with the people of Mankessim and all to exercise restraint in these matters while calling on government to as a matter of urgency, institute the mental health levy to help deal with these issues holistically.

END.
Contacts:
Dr. Caroline Amissah
Deputy Chief Executive,
Mental Health Authority – 0249379426
Victus Kwaku Kpesese
Deputy Director Administration,
Mental Health Authority – 0202698555
Dr Yaw Amankwaa Arthur
Head, Health Promotion
Source: Ghana/Kasapafmonline.com/Erica Arthur

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