The Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference says, “While it is not right to criminalize homosexuals just for being homosexuals, the state is within its right to criminalize the acts of homosexuals in the interest of the nation.”
The anti-gay bill, formerly known as the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill, is a proposed law that has sparked significant controversy within the country and internationally.
The bill seeks to criminalize same-sex sexual relationships, including oral sex and anal sex, with penalties ranging from five to 10 years in prison. It also criminalizes the advocacy for LGBTQ+ rights, the promotion of same-sex marriage or cohabitation, and the provision of support services to LGBTQ+ individuals.
Additionally, the bill proposes the punishment of individuals or organizations who organise or participate in LGBTQ+ events, provide resources to support LGBTQ+ people, or produce or distribute materials that promote LGBTQ+ rights.
In a statement issued on Monday, the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference said legislators may decide that a man marrying a man or a woman marrying a woman was not in the interest of the nation since, in the long term, it would have a negative effect on the size of Ghana’s population.
“In such a case, the lawmakers will be within their rights to enact laws against that. In such cases, it will be right for the lawmakers to criminalise such homosexual actions by punitive measures,” it added.