The proposed The Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill 2021is meant to safeguard the country’s future and not to engender hatred for persons who identify as LGBTQI+.
This is according to the Member of Parliament for South Dayi Constituency, Rockson Dafeamekpor, who’s one of the promoters of the private members’ bill.
“[Hate] is not the essence of the bill,” he said on the Citi Breakfast Show.
According to him, the activities of LGBTQI+ persons are abhorrent and need not be allowed to continue.
He said the bill is to safeguard the future of the country by ensuring that people, especially children under age 18, are not forced into accepting LGBTQI+ as the norm when they’re not matured to make their own informed chocies.
“As a country, we owe it a duty to ourselves and our future generation to enact laws to check certain activities which in the wisdom of the majority of the people are offensive to our future good, and this is one of such.”
“Don’t descend below the 18 years bracket and seek to indoctrinate [people] in your social way,” he said.
The 36-page proposed bill, according to its promoters, 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 its key proposals are the disbandment of all LGBTQI+ groups, associations, clubs, and organizations with a punishment of between 6 years and 10 years jail term for persons found to have contravened.
According to Mr. Dafeamekpor, there is evidence to the effect that some LGBTQI+ advocates are encouraging students to form associations and groups on their various campuses, and are being supported with advocacy materials on LGBTQI+.
“If you go to secondary schools and basic schools, they are encouraging young people to form clubs, and they are using these clubs as a conduit to disseminate their information. They come to the schools under the pretext of meeting club members and in meeting them, the material they give them to use largely contains information on the LGBTQ agenda,” he said.
Below are some 10 key things the bill is proposing:
- Individuals of the same sex who engage in sexual intercourse are to be fined between 50 and 5,000 penalty units or face a jail term of between 3 years and 5 years, or both.
- Persons who use any medium or technological platform to produce, procure, market, broadcast, disseminate, publish or distribute materials with the intention of promoting LGBTQI+ activities face a jail term of between 5 and 10 years.
- All LGBTQI+ groups, associations, clubs, and organizations are to be disbanded. Anyone found guilty to be jailed between 6 and 10 years.
- Proscription of sex with or marriage to an animal
- Ban on same-sex marriage and marriage to someone who has undergone sex reassignment
- Anyone who funds or sponsors activities of LGBTQI+ groups or individuals to be jailed between 5 and 10 years
- LGBTQI+ persons not to be granted an application to adopt or foster a child or children
- Persons of the same sex who make a public show of amorous relationships face a jail term of between 6 months and a year.
- Anyone who physically or verbally assaults, abuses or harasses a person accused of being LGBTQI+ to be fined between 500 penalty units and 1,000 penalty units or to be jailed between 6 months and a year.
- Persons accused of being LGBTQI+ should be granted access to medical assistance if they make such a request during the period of their incarceration.
LGBTQI rights in Ghana
Some persons have called for a specific law in Ghana to make homosexuality a criminal offence.
Although there are some provisions in the Criminal Code under which a homosexual can be prosecuted, especially for having intercourse with a partner, the belief is that a specific law must be enacted to declare homosexual relationships illegal.
Others have also called for a review of Ghana’s laws to be more accommodating of minority groups, as many countries are decriminalizing homosexuality.
In February 2020 for instance, the then Speaker of Ghana’s Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye, warned the World Bank against homosexuality conditions in development assistance to Ghana.
The current Speaker of Parliament has also spoken about his commitment towards the passage of a new law to deal with homosexuality.
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