Anti-LGBTQ+ bill currently before Parliament is defective – Majority Chief Whip
Majority Chief Whip, Frank Annoh-Dompreh, has responded to concerns that the Majority Caucus in Parliament is not supporting the anti-LGBTQ+ bill currently before the House.
The Nsawam-Adoagyiri MP noted that his side supports the bill that seeks to criminalise homosexuality in principle, stressing, however, that there are aspects of it which is defective and must be fixed.
According to him, democratic principles and freedoms of the people should not be curtailed by the bill.
His comment comes after the Deputy General Secretary of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Obiri Boahene, has said expressed worry over the silence of the majority of NPP MPs regarding the bill.
According to him, apart from NPP MP, John Ntim Fordjour, every other name mentioned when the issue comes up is National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP.
Mr Boahene described the practice of gay and lesbians as embarrassing, insulting, and nauseating and wants the majority of NPP MPs to let their voices be heard.
The anti-gay bill is sponsored by NDC MP for Ningo Prampram, Sam George and other NDC MPs, with only Reverend Ntim Fordjour listed as co-sponsor.
But the Majority Chief Whip said the discussion of the issue should transcend political lines.
It's unfortunate the LGBTQ bill is being politicised. As the majority caucus in Parliament, we agree in principle that legislation that protects Ghanaian values in all areas of life must be supported. However the bill, as it is now, is defective.
— Hon. Frank Annoh-Dompreh (@FAnnohDompreh) October 9, 2021
“It’s unfortunate the LGBTQ bill is being politicised. As the majority caucus in Parliament, we agree in principle that legislation that protects Ghanaian values in all areas of life must be supported. However, the bill, as it is now, is defective,” he tweeted on Saturday.
He added, “We need to fine-tune it to ensure that it maximises the protection of rights and freedoms in consonance with democratic principles as we have practised uninterrupted for over three decades.”
The bill is currently before Parliament’s Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee, receiving memoranda from the general public.
The Church of Pentecost has, in its memoranda to the committee, sent its strongest caution yet to government regarding the legislation against the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer and their related activities (LGBTQ+) in Ghana.
National Chairman of the Church, Apostle Eric Nyamekye, said his outfit will vote out any political party that stands against the passage of the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill.
Meanwhile, a group of academics and lawyers comprising Akoto Ampaw, Professor H. Kwasi Prempeh, Professor Audrey Gadzekpo have also voiced concerns about the bill, arguing it will dent Ghana’s image as a bastion of democracy because of clauses in the bill that curtails individual rights and freedoms.
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