Ghanaian president, Nana Akufo-Addo says legalizing homosexuality not a pressing social issue in Ghana

Ghanaian president, Nana Akufo-Addo says legalizing homosexuality not a pressing social issue in Ghana

President Nana Akufo-Addo has said a change in the law to decriminalize homosexuality is not of concern to Ghanaians at present.

The President, once a human rights activist and a lawyer, however said if activism in favour of the legalization of homosexuality heightens, that could trigger a change in Ghana’s laws.

In an interview with Qatar-based Al Jazeera, President Akufo-Addo said he felt such a push was “bound to happen” and possibly pave the way for the decriminalization of homosexuality.

Despite Ghana’s standing as a beacon of democracy on the African continent, the country’s decision not to succumb to advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender  rights has been questioned by some sections of the international community and even met by indirect threats.

Without making any definite pronouncement on the issue during the interview, President Akufo-Addo said any possible change will only come after a strong concerted push for LGBT rights from some sections of the public.

“For these socio-cultural issues, I don’t believe that in Ghana so far, a sufficiently strong coalition has emerged which is having that much impact on public opinion that will say, change it,” he stated.

The President noted that the acceptance of LGBT has always started with protests, and he recalled that even in the countries that now champion LGBT rights, homosexuality was illegal until activism brought change.

“I grew up at a time in England where homosexuality was banned, it was illegal and I lived in a period where British politicians thought it was anathema to even think about changing the law and then suddenly, the activities of individuals and groups… grew and grew stronger and enforced the change in the law.”

“Those are the same processes that will bring about changes [in Ghana],” he added. But “at the moment, I don’t feel that there is that strong current of opinion that is saying this is something that we need you to deal with. It is not so far a matter which is on the agenda.”

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6 Comments

  1. Malik
    November 28, 10:36 Reply

    I like his tact. If he’s actually saying what I think he’s saying. LGBT Ghanaians should stage a serious enough protest and they’ll pick up the conversation from there. Fair enough from an African president if you ask me.

  2. Manach
    November 28, 10:37 Reply

    “For these socio-cultural issues, I don’t believe that in Ghana so far, a sufficiently strong coalition has emerged which is having that much impact on public opinion that will say, change it,” he stated.

    For those who will rush in now and start slinging invectives. Comprehension is key

  3. Gad
    November 28, 21:40 Reply

    The greatest challenge to homophobia is shielding oneself from people who are angry with you for discussing it.

  4. Canis VY Majoris
    November 29, 06:27 Reply

    Glimmer of Hope, an African President that is liberal.

    Well said sir. Change has a process.

  5. Absalom
    November 29, 16:31 Reply

    Still sad, though, that what is morally right has to depend on what is popular. Then again, he’s a politician.

    Nice save, still.

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