Same-sex marriage ‘will not happen in my time as President’, Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo has said.
President Akufo-Addo has been under intense pressure in the last few days to state his position on the legalisation of lesbian, gay, bisexuals and transgender (LGBTQ+) activities in the country.
The public vehemently opposed the opening of an LGBTQ+ office in Accra and expressed fear over the possiblity of making the activities of homosexuals legal in Ghana following US President Joe Biden’s memo to impose visa ban and economic sanctions on nations which do not protect gay rights.
Latest report from the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA) cites Ghana as one of 32 countries in Africa that still criminalises same-sex relations.
Security forces closed down the LGBTQ+ office on Wednesday. A section of the public however expected President Akufo-Addo to immediately address the nation on the matter.
President Akufo-Addo has finally broken his silence, and according to him, there is no way his government will make same-sex marriage lawful.
‘It will never happen in my time as President…I have said it before, and let me stress it again, that it will not be under the Presidency of Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo-Addo that same-sex marriage will be legal’, Akufo-Addo said on Saturday during the installation of the 2nd Archbishop of the Anglican Church held in Asante Mampong.
Ghana is increasingly becoming a centre for LGBT activism.
In 2020, Pan-Africa ILGA, a South Africa-based association intended to host an international LGBT+ conference in Accra.
According to the organisers, the event, scheduled for July, was the first of its kind in West Africa and aimed to bring together LGBT+ leaders to share ideas and work together on changing discriminatory laws.
But the government stopped the conference after an outcry from conservative Christian groups in the country.
‘(The) Ghana government won’t allow such (a) conference and that is it’, a spokesman for the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection explained to Thomson Reuters Foundation.