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Politics of Monday, 26 July 2021


Manasseh responds to Gabby's 'LGBTQ+ bill' comments

Investigative journalist, Manasseh Azure and NPP stalwart, Gabby Otchere-Darko Investigative journalist, Manasseh Azure and NPP stalwart, Gabby Otchere-Darko

• The LGBTQ+ bill is currently at the draft stage and will be laid before parliament in the coming days or weeks

• The bill is led by Ningo Prampram MP, Sam George, and other 7 MPS

• Manasseh Azuri has shared his thoughts on this developing matter in a Facebook post sighted by GhanaWeb

There's an ongoing debate on the criminalization of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ+) activities in Ghana. As some back this call, others think otherwise.

NPP stalwart, Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, over the weekend said the new anti-gay bill to be presented in parliament will only lead to Ghana being blacklisted for promoting hate but renowned journalist, Manasseh Azuri, has punched holes into this comment.

He wondered why the Western world hasn't sanctioned Arabian countries for frowning against the activities of LGBTQ+ in their territories.

In a Facebook post sighted by GhanaWeb, the investigative journalist said, "To Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko and those talking about Western sanctions and blacklisting should Ghana go ahead with the anti-LGBTQ+ bill, I want to ask this question: Why has the West not sanctioned or blacklisted Saudi Arabia and other countries in the Arab World? Are there no gays and lesbians in Saudi Arabia and the Arab world? Or do they discriminate in the application of their principles? As we question our own actions, shouldn't we not also question the inconsistencies of the West?"

In his view, African leaders, including those in Ghana, should rather be blacklisted for looting resources and spending lavishly on themselves while their citizens suffer and keep wallowing in poverty.

"Why have they not blacklisted Ghana and other African countries for the massive looting of resources and aid money by their leaders while the masses suffer? Why should some powerful nations tie aid to LGBTQ+ rights instead of other important issues of governance such as corruption? Or is sexuality more important to them than the poverty and famine that are caused by the leaders, whose devious actions they know very well?" he quizzed.

Individuals 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.

Here are major highlights of the bill before parliament:

- Sex shall only be between a man and woman. Anything else is illegal.

- Anyone who participates, promotes, supports, advocates gay sex commits an offense and could be jailed for a minimum of 3 yrs.

- The law completely makes illegal, any form of advocacy, group, or discussions on the practice of homosexuality.

- It is an offense to use any media to discuss the subject. These include individual social media accounts and mainstream media. A media person can be jailed for 5-10 years, while the owner of a media platform may also be jailed.

- The bill recognizes blowjob as sex.

Currently, it is at the draft stage and will be laid before the house and subsequently expected to be referred to the appropriate committee for consideration.

Read Manasseh's Facebook post below.

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