Lawmaker Says Ghana May Add Homosexuality to Penal Code

Posted November 4th, 2011 at 8:25 am (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

A lawmaker in Ghana says parliament is set to discuss new laws against homosexuality.

On Wednesday, Ghana's President John Atta Mills said he will never back any effort to make homosexuality legal in the country. He was responding to comments from British Prime Minister David Cameron, who threatened to cut aid to nations with anti-gay legislation.

Lawmaker Catherine Afeku now tells VOA that most members of parliament support reviewing the penal code to address homosexuality. She notes that current law does not explicitly ban the practice.

Afeku is calling for an open debate on the issue, which she says is currently stigmatized.

Mr. Cameron issued his warning about withholding aid this week at a meeting of Commonwealth nations in Australia.

Clerics and activists in several African countries have criticized Mr. Cameron's statement, saying it reflects a colonial mentality and infringes on other countries' sovereignty.

Homosexuality remains illegal or frowned upon across most of the continent, although gays have the right to marry in South Africa.

Afeku says any bill proposing to legalize same-sex marriage in Ghana would be “dead upon arrival.”