Guinean court jails woman

A woman in Guinea who sold herbs and portions of sterile women, telling them they would become pregnant, has been jailed for five years.

Traditional healer N’na Fanta Camara made concoctions that made the women’s bellies swell. She is said to tricked more than 700 women, charging them large sums for the treatment.

Camara, who was found guilty of fraud and impersonating a doctor by giving the women harmful substances and endangering their lives, was also ordered to pay $165,000 in compensation.

Two other accomplices were convicted of similar charges and were sentenced to three years and four years in prison.

According to a report, the victims at the court were upset she did not get a harsh sentence. One victim said that; “She gave us some medicines of leaves and herbs that made us vomit. She assures us that this was good for us.”

“On a second visit, she gave us some herbs and leaves which we boiled and drank. As one continued to take the medicines, the stomach started to rise a bit.”

After a while, we visited again, she examined us by just touching our bellies and she declares us pregnant. However she gives us strict instructions not to go to the hospital,”

“We experienced our normal menstrual cycle during the period. On the day she declared any woman pregnant, she had to give her fabric and hen, after the initial payment.”

For her services, the women aged between 17 and 45- paid $33 in a country where the average monthly wage is around $48.

Some of the women reported looking pregnant for between 12 and 18 months. Police believe Ms. Camara made thousands of dollars a month out of the caper.

The victim’s lawyer, Seny Kamano said Camara had received the maximum possible sentence, but said the level of compensation was “insufficient” for the more than 700 women affected.

A Police doctor, who had examined 47 of affected women, said at the time that they risked long-term complications from the treatment.

“We won but I am not satisfied with this victory,” one victim, Fatou Seck, said.

She added: “What has angered us the most is that as soon as the judge pronounces her sentence, Nna Fanta responded by thanking God. She is happy over the misfortune she brought us.”

Camara had defended herself, saying: “I work very hard to help (the women) realized their dream, but the rest is in the hands of God”

in 2006, the World Health Organization said that 80% of Africans used traditional medicals treatments.



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