The Catholic Bishop of Konongo-Mampong, Most Reverend Joseph Osei-Bonsu, recently slammed President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in an open letter for what he perceives as inconsistent remarks on LGBTQI+ issues in the country.
Most. Rev. Osei-Bonsu cited the President’s 2017 Aljazeera interview, where Akufo-Addo stated that there was no “sufficiently strong coalition” to change Ghana’s laws regarding LGBTQI+ issues. The Bishop argued that the President should have emphasized that homosexuality remains a criminal offense in Ghana, referring to Section 104 of the Ghanaian Criminal Code of 1960, which criminalizes consensual same-sex sexual acts between individuals of the same gender.
The Catholic Bishop also criticized President Akufo-Addo for his recent comments on LGBTQI+ issues during American Vice President Kamala Harris’s visit to Ghana. Harris urged Ghana to respect the rights of homosexuals, and in response, Akufo-Addo mentioned that his government has intervened and modified the “Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values 2021” bill.
In his open letter, Most. Rev. Osei-Bonsu emphasized that the President must clarify to those advocating for LGBTQI+ rights that “the rights of homosexuals as persons do not include the right of a man to marry a man or of a woman to marry a woman.” He further stressed that LGBTQI+ activities should not be considered part of fundamental human rights and cannot be included in the list of human rights.
The Bishop’s letter highlights the ongoing debate on LGBTQI+ rights in Ghana and the need for clear stances from political leaders on the matter.