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LGBTQ: Ghana passes anti-gay law



1703050302 LGBTQ

The Ghana Parliament, on Wednesday, passed the bill on human sexual rights and family values, popularly referred to as the anti-LGBTQ bill.

The measure, titled the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values measure, was introduced by Sam Nartey George, MP for Ningo-Prampram.

According to GhanaWeb, the bill was introduced as a Private Members Bill by Ningo-Prampram MP Sam Nartey George.

According to Citi Newsroom, the bill forbids LGBTQ activities and makes promoting, advocating for, or funding them illegal.

According to local media, anybody caught partaking in the activity might face imprisonment sentences ranging from six months to three years, while those who assist or promote the action could face three to five years in prison.

This comes after years of the bill being in parliament and progressing through various phases, with opponents attempting to delay it or make revisions.

Homosexuality is currently illegal in Ghana, punishable by up to three years in prison.

The new legislation increases the maximum punishment to five years.

This measure will also make it illegal to distribute materials that promote LGBTQ rights.

According to Citi Newsroom, Parliament passed the bill one day after Professor Audrey Gadzekpo, Board Chair of the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development, urged President Nana Akufo-Addo to reject it.

Takyiwaa Manuh, a senior fellow at the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development, told CBS News that Akufo-Addo had not accepted any previously privately sponsored measures due to legal concerns about the country’s constitution.

According to Manuh, the speaker of the parliament did not do the essential analysis of the bill.

She believes that if the bill becomes law, it will have a substantial impact on the courts, law enforcement, and other aspects of society.

“I am sad, disappointed, and surprised that our commitment and democratic principles in this country appear to be so shallow.

“This bill represents a real danger to our country, and we are looking to the president to uphold the values of our country and constitution,” she said.

To go into force, the bill must be approved by the President.

It is questionable whether President Akufo-Addo would sign the law.

In 2021, the United Nations voiced concern over the planned Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Law, warning that it could lead to state-sponsored discrimination and violence against sexual minorities.

Uganda passed tough anti-LGBTQ legislation in May 2023, including the death penalty for certain gay activities.