The Member of Parliament for Ningo-Prampram is insistent that the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana does not consider same-sex relationships as a fundamental human right.
Speaking on Joy FM’s Midday News, Friday, Mr Sam Nartey George, said homosexuality is regarded as a human preference. He, therefore, dared persons, including legal practitioners, who hold opposing views to prove otherwise.
“Homosexuality is not a fundamental human right. Show me where in the 1992 Constitution, it says that sexual preference is a fundamental human right. The laws of Ghana are clear. I challenge anybody, any lawyer in this country to show me. Homosexuality is a human preference, it is not a fundamental human right,” he said.
His comment comes at a time when members of the general public are expressing diverse opinions on a private member bill sighted on social media against the involvement, promotion, propagation, advocacy, support or funding for LGBTQI+ related activities.
The 36-page anti-LGBTQI+ bill revealed some eight legislators who are spearheading the fight against same-sex relationships in the country. They are Sam George, Ho West MP, Emmanuel Bedzrah, MP for Kpando, Della Adjoa Sowah, John Ntim Fordjour, the MP for Assin South.
The rest are MP for Tamale North, Alhassan Sayibu Suhuyini, La Dadekotopon MP, Rita Naa Odoley Sowah, the MP for Krachi West, Helen Adjoa Ntoso, Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, the MP for South Dayi.
Portions of the Bill state that 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.”
Also, it proposed that; “a person who, by use of media, technological platform, technological account or any other means, produces, procures, markets, broadcasts, disseminates, publishes or distributes a material for purposes of promoting an activity prohibited under the Bill, or a person who uses an electronic device, the Internet service, a film, or any other device capable of electronic storage or transmission to produce, procure, market, broadcast, disseminate, publishes or distribute a material for purposes of promoting an activity prohibited under the Bill, commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction, to a term of imprisonment of not less than five years and not more than ten years.”
The Bill further suggests that persons who engage in activities that “promote, support, express sympathy for or call for a change of public opinion towards an act prohibited under the Bill”, are liable on summary conviction to a term of imprisonment of not less than five years or not more than ten years.
Although Mr Nartey George declined to expatiate on the nitty-gritty of the Bill as it is undergoing gazetting, he, nonetheless, described as comical, the interpretation being put across by some members of the public.
According to the Ningo-Prampram legislator, “the issues that are defined as crime or as offensive in the acts are clear. A conversation or an interview of this nature, I do not believe is promoting homosexuality. We are clear in the language we used in the Bill. I’ve seen all kinds of interpretation being put out there but I take that as a comical aspect of Ghanaian lives.”
On the issue of advocacy, he stated that armed robbers and prostitutes are not provided with the platform to clarify why they are engaged in such acts, hence, the same should be replicated for persons involved in same-sex relationships.
“If you won’t do that, why will you be granting a platform for clarity on something the laws of Ghana say is illegal. Interviews with the prostitutes are not meant to understand and give them a platform to push their trade. That in itself will be illegal,” he added.
Meanwhile, Cambridge Researcher, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, has indicated that should the Anti-LGBT Bill be passed in its current form, sex between a man and a woman would be as illegal as sex between same-sex couples.
Mr Barker-Vormawor explained that the use of pansexual activities in the said Bill is problematic because it could mean sexual activities between two opposite genders.
A pansexual in the proposed Bill, is defined as “a person who engages in a sexual or romantic activity with persons of any gender identity or expression, including persons who do not fit into the binary sex categorisation of male and female.”
“The law defines what it means by pansexual activities, and it says a pansexual refers to a person who engages in sexual or romantic activity with a person of any gender. Now, this is important because by this, if you say that pansexual activity is wrong, then it implies that if a person is engaged in sexual or romantic activity with persons of any gender, then they are doing something criminal.
“By this view, if a guy engages in sex with his wife, obviously the wife is of a different gender. So by that intellect, the law is implying that this is a pansexual activity. So what I am saying is that they have ended up banning sex in its entirety because of the improper definition they’ve done. This problem persists throughout the Bill,” he said.