THE Presbyterian Church of Ghana has proposed a minimum three-year jail term for persons engaged in LGBTQIA+ activities in Ghana, according to local media reports.
According to online news publication Pulse, the call was made when the church, led by its representative, presented its memorandum at the public hearing on the private member’s bill known as the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values by the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee of Parliament.
Furthermore, the Director of Ecumenical and Social Relations of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, Reverend Nii Amarh Ashitey, said the punishment prescribed in the Anti-LGBTQIA + bill currently before parliament must be deterrent enough.
Dubbed the ‘most homophobic document the world has ever seen,’ legislators in Ghana are hell-bent on passing a law making life even harder for LGBTQIA+ persons in the West African country, a bill that essentially strips the community of all their human rights.
The 36-page Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill 2021, which is yet to be considered by parliament, seeks to criminalise LGBTQIA+ activities in the staunchly religious West African country.
‘As Christians, we believe in mercy and forgiveness, but we equally believe that punishments are meant as deterrents not only for the offender but also for people who harbour similar intent,’ as cited by a Modern Ghana report.
‘This bill is, essentially, to control social order and norms that the punishment prescribed must be deterrent enough.’
Citing a report by Pulse, Reverend Ashitey said: ‘we find that the needs of the law on Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values have emerged from the inadequacy of the Criminal Offences Act 1960 (Act 29).
‘This law that hopes to come out after this bill has been passed, is needed to deter unacceptable behaviours that are injurious to the common good of society.’
According to the church, ‘the ordinary Ghanaian believes a human being is either a man or a woman and that men marry women and vice-versa, there’s no alternative to this arrangement,’ said the report.