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Anti-LGBTQI+ bill to be laid before parliament today

An anti-gay bill titled the Promotion of Proper human sexual rights and Ghanaian family values, 2021 which seeks to criminalize LGBTQI+ activities in the country is expected to be laid in Parliament later today, Monday, August 2, 2021.

The private members’ bill is being championed by eight members of parliament, namely;

Sam George (MP, Ningo-Prampram)

Della Sowah (MP, Kpando)

Emmanuel Bedzrah (MP, Ho West)

John Ntim Forjour (MP, Assin South)

Alhassan Suhuyini (MP, Tamale North)

Rita Sowah (MP, La Dadekotopon)

Helen Ntoso (MP, Krachi West)

Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor (MP, South Dayi)

The 36-page document is to ensure proper human sexual rights and Ghanaian family values; proscribe LGBTQ+ and related activities; proscribe propaganda of, advocacy for or promotion of LGBTTQQIAAP+ and related activities; provide for the protection of and support for children, persons who are victims or accused of LGBTTQQIAAP+ and related activities.

Among other things, the bill says people of the same sex who engage in sexual intercourse are “liable on summary conviction to a fine of not less than seven hundred and fifty penalty units and not more than five thousand penalty units, or to a term of imprisonment of not less than three years and not more than five years or both.”

It covers any person who “holds out as a lesbian, a gay, a transgender, a transsexual, a queer, a pansexual, an ally, a non-binary or any other sexual or gender identity that is contrary to the binary categories of male and female.”

Meanwhile, some Human Rights organizations and members of the LGBTQI+ community have kicked against the bill.

The Organizing Secretary of The Humanist Association of Ghana, Ms Angela Adatsi, complained on Talk of the Nation on Class91.3FM on Monday, 26 July 2021 that “This bill seeks to criminalize all efforts by allies to support members of the community to actually talk and educate the public, so, this bill is really dangerous in every aspect and every capacity”.

She complained that the proposed bill even criminalizes the use of sex toys during sex.

The LGBTQI+ community in Ghana has also described the bill seeking as “horrifying and absurd”.

They have likened it to a document authored by American extremists groups like the KKK, who are white supremacists, and suspect they are behind the Ghanaian bill in their bid to spread hate in the West African country.

Reacting to the bill on Talk of the Nation on Class91.3FM on Tuesday, 27 July 2021, Director of the LGBTQI+ Ghana, Mr Alex Kofi Donkor, said the bill is a threat to every Ghanaian.

He told show host Ewura Adams Karim: “I’ve gone through this bill and I’m saying this bill is horrifying and incredibly absurd. It is horrifying and incredibly absurd in the sense that they named the bill ‘Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values’ but honestly, this bill is not any Ghanaian bill. And I’m saying this because these are some of the documents by the American extremist group like the KKK and the World Congress of Families”.

“These are families that object to black people, they object to Islamic people, they believe in white supremacy and this idea, when you look at the American history, has been fought and it’s been rejected.”

Mr Donkor said “it is a hate bill”, stressing: “This is American far-right or extremist bill”.

“They realized that the idea of extremists is being rejected in places like the UK and, so, they’re looking for new breeding grounds to export this hate”.

“Also, they’ve realized countries like Uganda, Nigeria and Ghana are countries you can describe as very conservative and, so, they believe that if they bring bills like this in these countries, they will be able to sail through”, he noted.

He said: “When we mention issues of LGBT, it is sensationalized in this country and, so, once they say the bill is against LGBT, we will get a lot of Ghanaians to support it”.

“When you read the bill into detail, it is not about attacking LGBT alone, it is targeting how people dress, this bill is criminalizing sex toys, it is even criminalizing oral sex (blowjob), so, people who think this bill is targeting LGBTQI+ persons alone, then they are joking, it is targeting every Ghanaian.”

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