Private legal practitioner, Akoto Ampaw, has indicated that most Ghanaians who support the anti-LGBTQ+ Bill do not have full details of the document which has been laid before parliament.
He explained that the majority of Ghanaians are only supporting the bill because they are against homosexuality and same-sex related activities.
“One of the things about this bill is that most Ghanaians do not like homosexuality so all they hear is that there is a move to ban homosexuality and on that basis, they say ‘We support it’. In fact, many among them, even the educated class, have not read the bill. All they know is that this bill is to prevent homosexual activity. But the actual provisions of the bill, very few people have read it,” Akoto Ampaw said on Joynews.
He further stated that the supporters of the anti-LGBTQ+ Bill who actually read the documents were taken aback afterwards.
"If you are a mother and you have a son who is a homosexual, you may not be happy about it but I can tell you apart from really crazy mothers, they’d just have to live with that situation. Now, this law puts a duty on that mother to report her son to the police. This is the duty under this law."
“Is this not extremist? What social good does it promote for a mother to go and report her son because of who he is? How do you justify that?” he quizzed.
In regards to the protection of persons who identify as LGBTQ+, Akoto Ampaw said the assurance in the bill will only arouse public sentiment and public hatred for homosexuals.
“The provisions which talk about providing protection and so on are hypocritical. Even our police will not be interested in that portion of the law. If the law says homosexuals are to be dealt with like the bill proposes and people beat them, I tell you…"
“If you go and report to the police that you are a homosexual and you have been beaten, they will just look at you and say ‘go away’. That scheme of the whole bill is meaningless," Akoto Ampaw added.
A team of 8 MPs led by Sam Nartey George have jointly submitted a private bill to push for the criminalization of LGBTQI+ activities in the country.
The Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill 2021 was laid in the House on Monday, August 2 and read for the first time.
Second Deputy Speaker, Andrew Asiamah Amoako, has subsequently referred the Bill to the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Committee for consideration.
Wereko-Brobby, Tsikata, Akoto Ampaw Others Kick Against LGBTQ+ Bill
According to the group, the bill — Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill — when passed into law, would erode fundamental human rights, as enshrined in the 1992 Constitution, and send Ghana to the dark ages of lawlessness and intolerance.
The group, made up of 18 members, has already submitted a 30-page memorandum to Parliament, detailing what it described as the unconstitutionality of the bill.
At a press conference in Accra yesterday, the group said its advocacy was not about whether lesbianism or gayism was right or wrong but rather it was worried about the blatant violations of human rights, as contained in the bill.
“The bill violates virtually all the key fundamental freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution, namely, the right to freedom of speech and expression, the right to assemble, freedom of association and the right to organise, the right to freedom from discrimination and the right to human dignity,” it said.
It has, therefore, called on Parliament to reject the bill, adding that “it has no place in our constitutional democratic Republic”.
The group include lawyer Mr Akoto Ampaw; author, scholar and former Director of the UN Economic Commission for Africa, Prof. Emerita Takyiwaa Manuh; a communications and media expert, Prof. Kwame Karikari; the Dean of the University of Ghana (Legon) School of Law, Prof. Raymond Atuguba, and the Dean of the University of Ghana School of Information and Communication Studies, Prof. Audrey Gadzekpo.
The Director of the Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, Professor Dzodzi Tsikata; the Executive Director of the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), Professor H. Kwasi Prempeh, and a former Executive Director of CDD-Ghana, Prof. Kofi Gyimah-Boadi, are also members of the group.
Others are Dr Rose Mensah-Kutin, Dr Yao Graham, Mr Kwasi Adu Amankwah, Dr Kojo Asante, Mr Kingsley Ofei-Nkansah, Mr Akunu Dake, Mr Tetteh Hormeku-Ajie, Dr Charles Wereko-Brobby, Dr Joseph Asunka and Nana Ama Agyemang Asante.
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