Virginia Palmer, the US ambassador to Ghana, has counseled Ghanaians and their parliamentary representatives to uphold national and international laws that prioritize defending the rights of all people, regardless of sexual orientation.
The Ghanaian Parliament is now debating the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values 2021, which among other things will outlaw the promotion of same-sex or homosexual behavior in the nation.
International groups have expressed worry that the Bill may violate the rights of LGBTQ+ people, a minority demographic in the nation.
In spite of these concerns, Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin has indicated that “the sexual rights and human values Bill that is being handled by the committee will definitely be passed before the next elections. That Bill will go through,” he stressed.
Commenting on tightening of laws against homosexuals in Ghana, Virginia Palmer said: “We are not commenting on the morality of this. We are just asking for people’s rights to be respected so that they be left peaceful and free from harm”.
The foreign diplomat further told host of JoyNews‘ Foreign Affairs on JoyNews, Blessed Sogah that, “I think it is political hot potato and I think in some ways it is being used as a political hot potato and what I am saying is that I hope that Ghana’s citizens, Ghana’s parliamentarians, Ghana’s leaders will respect Ghana’s Constitution and its international obligations to which it is a signatory.”
It is unclear when Parliament’s Constitutional legal and parliamentary Affairs Committee will conclude its report on the Bill which is currently before the House.
However, speaking on JoyNews’ The Pulse on Sunday, the Chairman of the Committee, Mr. Kwame Anyimadu-Antwi said the report will be laid before the House before it rises for the end of year break.