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Ghana’s Parliament Passes Controversial Anti-Homosexuality Bill

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(CTN News) – Ghana’s parliament, in a unanimous decision on Wednesday, passed a highly contested anti-homosexuality bill, sparking international criticism.

Announcing the development on X, formerly Twitter, Sam George, one of the primary sponsors of the bill, expressed satisfaction after three years of deliberation.

Introduced in 2021, the Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Act not only criminalizes LGBTQ relationships but also targets individuals advocating for LGBTQ rights.

Similar to many African nations, Ghana continues to uphold laws criminalizing same-sex activities, often stemming from colonial-era legislation. Recent legislative efforts across Africa have sought to clarify and, in some instances, reinforce such laws.

A CNN investigation recently uncovered alleged ties between a U.S. nonprofit and the formulation of homophobic laws, an accusation vehemently denied by the organization in question.

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Ghana’s Anti-Homosexuality Bil

Before the bill officially becomes law in Ghana, it requires approval from the country’s president.

The passing of the bill drew profound concern from Volker Türk, the United Nations human rights chief, who urged the Ghanaian government not to sign it into law.

Türk highlighted that the legislation expands the scope of criminal sanctions against LGBTQ individuals and their allies, emphasizing the infringement on fundamental human rights.

UNAIDS Executive Director Winnie Byanyima, responding to the bill’s approval, cautioned that its enactment would have widespread consequences, affecting everyone and impeding the nation’s efforts against HIV and AIDS.

Byanyima stressed the importance of inclusive approaches, expressing concern that the bill could curtail free speech, freedom of movement, and freedom of association while hindering access to life-saving services.

Byanyima argued that Ghana’s progress in the HIV response, rooted in inclusivity, could be jeopardized. She warned that punitive laws, like the one in question, act as barriers to ending AIDS, undermining public health and the country’s overall development success.

In essence, the international community stands united in opposing the potential ramifications of this controversial legislation in Ghana.

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