Just when we thought the dust had settled for the signing of the anti-LGBTQI+ Bill by the President, new disturbing developments have cropped up to delay the presidential assent. The new developments are: first, the inordinate delay in finalising the Bill by Parliamentarians; second, the interview granted by a top Ghanaian clergyman to the BBC; third, the declaration of Fiducia Supplicansto allow the blessing of same-sex marriages.
THE PRESIDENTIAL PROMISES AND SUDDEN RENEGE
On 6th October 2019, the President, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, assured that “so long as he remains President, there is no way Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) will be introduced into the school curricula”. The President of the Republic firmed up his stance on LGBTQ+ matters to the nation in Asante Mampong Anglican Church when he declared that “it will not be under the presidency of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo that same-sex marriage will be legalised in Ghana; it will never happen in my time as president.” This much-awaited statement made over 94.4% of Ghana’s population shout for joy, applauding the President for his bold stance. 94.4% of Ghanaians cheering on the President is such an overwhelming majority that no political party will gamble with them for any reason. Of course, the 94.4%4 comprises 71.3% in the Christian community, 19.9% Muslims and 3.2% traditionalists conspicuously represented by our indefatigable chiefs and custodians of our customs. If 4.5% of the population professing “Other Religions” are added, the faith–based community in Ghana makes up 98.9% of the population. The mind-boggling question in the homes and streets of Ghana is why there is inexplicable stagnation in passing the Bill by Parliament. The Constitutional and Legal Affairs Committee of Parliament has concluded its work and recommended that the Bill be passed.
In fact, passing the Bill and its assent by the President is overly anticipated by most Ghanaians. An overwhelming majority supported the passing of the Bill because, on the day the Constitutional Committee presented the Bill to Parliament, all the 275 Members of Parliament unanimously agreed that the Bill should be accepted for consideration and passed into law. Lawsuits filed in the Supreme Court to stop Parliament from considering the Bill have been disposed of. Therefore, there is no hindrance to the passing of the Bill. Additionally, the Bill is not expected to face the constitutional hurdles the “Witchcraft Bill” suffered because the Attorney-General has raised these constitutional concerns about article 108 of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana to the extent that private members’ bill cannot impose financial burden on the government and the same meticulously dealt with. Parliament should, therefore, bear in mind that their constituents are anxiously waiting for them to finish with the Bill for the President’s assent.
BBC INTERVIEW AND MATTERS ARISING
The week commencing on 27th November 2023 was filled with matters arising from an interview granted to the BBC HardTalk by Cardinal Peter Kwodwo Turkson. A revered, colossal clergy best placed at the Vatican and touted to become the first African Pontiff. Our prayers certainly rise through the solitude of the night for the realisation of this sweet dream, a remarkable honour for the nation of Ghana. However, the short interview the revered priest granted to the BBC HardTalk did not assist the stance of the Church regarding the anti-LGBTQ+ Bill. He is said to have advocated tolerance for LGBTQ+ and criticised the anti-LBTQ+ Bill the whole country is praying for. He is further quoted to have suggested that LGBTQ+ practitioners need more education and understanding. Quite frankly, the revered clergy misunderstood the LGBTQ+ Bill and the supporting memoranda submitted on behalf of the broadest spectrum of the Ghanaian society. The anti-Homosexual Bill has copious memoranda from every facet of Ghanaian society. The revered Cardinal later issued a statement on the assertions made in his interview, which demonstrates his u-turn on LGBTQ+ matters.
POINT OF U-TURN
On 12th December 2023, Graphic Online published the statement by the revered Cardinal Turkson to clarify the BBC interview. The letter dated 7/12/23 by Cardinal Turkson constitutes a conspicuous u-turn from attacking the anti-Homosexual Bill to supporting and approving it. The caption of the response by the Cardinal is, “Let us not criminalise people for who/what they are; let us criminalise people for what they do!” The response further states,
“I thought, therefore, that there was the need for some education, first to properly understand the phenomenon and its diverse manifestations in people and secondly, to distinguish between the phenomenon/tendency and its manifestation in homosexual acts. While the latter can be legislated and, thus, condemned or criminalised by a community or a State, the former, the phenomenon/tendency, may not be criminalised. There are no acts/deeds to criminalise!”
In plain words, the revered Cardinal is saying that if people think or say or want to be or feel like homosexuals, then they cannot be criminalised, but if they decide to manifest or practise or display that intention or feeling in the community then the manifestation or practise or display of the homosexual acts must be criminalised. In other words, Cardinal Turkson’s u-turn statement is that – CRIMINALISE ACTS OF HOMOSEXUALITY, NOT THE HUMAN HOMOSEXUALS. This is an explicit approval of the anti–LGTBQ+ Bill before Parliament because the Bill does not stop anybody from being a homosexual, but the acts of homosexuality and aiding and abetting of the same within the borders of Ghana are those the Bill seeks to proscribe. May I state categorically that the laws of Ghana do not criminalise any human being? The laws criminalise undesirable acts. Indeed, Article 19(2) provides, “A person charged with a criminal offence shall – (c) be presumed to be innocent until he is proven or has pleaded guilty;” Clearly, the Constitution does not allow any person to be called or treated as a criminal (even if caught red-handed) unless the act constituting a crime has been proved against that person in the competent courts of law. May I add that criminality and criminal law and justice are founded upon two main ingredients? They are intent or intention (mens rea) and an act (actus reus). As long as one nurses a criminal intent/intention but does not manifest it in a physical act, they have no problem with the law (though there may be inchoate offences where criminal intent may not be executed entirely. see the Annotated Criminal Code of Ghana by HL Prof. Henrietta Mensah Bonsu.)
Similarly, anyone can call or consider themselves homosexuals, but as long as they do not involve themselves in the acts or activities of homosexuality, they have no problem with the anti-LGBTQ+ law.
BASIS OF THE ANTI-LGBTQ+ BILL
It is quite strange that many people within the international community have misunderstood the anti-LGBTQ+ Bill. As summarised in the Communique by the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference (dated
11/12/2023), “the bill aimed to provide for proper human sexual rights and Ghanaian family values, proscribe LGBTQ+ and related activities, and protect children, persons who were victims or accused of LGBTTQQIAAP+ and related activities”. Rightly captured by the Bishops, the anti-LGBTQ+ Bill aims at criminalising, among others, wanton attacks on people perceived as homosexuals, victims of homosexual acts and children lured into homosexual acts. In fact, the anti-LGBTQ+ Bill protects homosexuals from attacks. How can anyone claiming to be a human rights activist oppose such a Bill? The Bill satisfies Article 19(5) of the Constitution of Ghana 1992; a “person shall not be charged with or held to be guilty of a criminal offence which is founded on an act or omission that did not at the time it took place constitute an offence.” Thus, the anti-LGBTQ+ Bill seeks to do the very thing revered Cardinal Turkson now advocates, “Let us not criminalise people for who/what they are; let us criminalise people for what they do!” The Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference shares this position with Cardinal Turkson. However, to be able to criminalise what people do, there must be legislation creating the offences and prescribing the penalties that go with them before the country can punish homosexual acts. The Catholic Bishops Conference, again, have made it clear in their communique dated 11/12/2023,
“… we can state that the draft bill on “Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values 2021 currently in Parliament is in the right direction, as it seeks to enact laws against criminal homosexual acts.” The President should, therefore, take into cognisance the u-turn by Cardinal Turkson in favour of the Bill and the clear stance of the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference and hasten to sign the Bill without further delay.
A DELIBERATE ATTEMPT TO DISTORT SOCIETY
Let it be made known that LGBTQ+ adherents have a Homosexual Manifesto they are aggressively pursuing in the world. In 1971/79, theGay Liberation Front in London unveiled their Manifesto to seek, among other aims, freedom from discrimination.
However, according to United States Congressional Records, reproduced by Michael Swift in 1987, the Homosexual Manifesto, nicknamed “Gay Revolutionary” has the following aims and pursuit:
- “We shall sodomize your sons. We shall seduce them in your schools, in your dormitories, in your gymnasiums, in your locker rooms, in your sports arenas, in your seminaries, in your youth groups, in your movie theatre bathrooms, in your army bunkhouses, in your truck stops, in your all-male clubs, in your houses of Congress, wherever men are with men together.”
- “Women, we shall give your men pleasures they have never known because we are foremost men too, and only one man knows how to truly please another man; only one man can understand the depth and feeling, the mind and body of another man.”
- “All laws banning homosexual activity will be revoked. Instead, legislation shall be passed which engenders love between men.”
- “We shall write poems of the love between men; we shall stage plays in which man openly caresses man; we shall make films about the love between heroic men which will replace heterosexual infatuations presently dominating your cinema screens. We shall sculpt statues of beautiful young men and bold athletes, which will be placed in your parks, squares, and plazas. The museums of the world will be filled only with paintings of graceful, naked lads.”
- “Our writers and artists will make love between men fashionable and de rigueur, and we will succeed because we are adept at setting styles. We will eliminate heterosexual liaisons through usage of the Redeeming the Rainbow devices of wit and ridicule, devices which we are skilled in employing.”
- “We will unmask the powerful homosexuals who masquerade as heterosexuals. You will be shocked and frightened when you find that your presidents and their sons, your industrialists, your senators, your mayors, your generals, your athletes, your film stars, your television personalities, your civic leaders, and your priests are not the safe, familiar, bourgeois, heterosexual figures you assumed them to be.
- “We are everywhere; we have infiltrated your ranks. Be careful when you speak of homosexuals because we are always among you; we may be sitting across the desk from you; we may be sleeping in the same bed with you.”
- “We are highly intelligent; we are the natural aristocrats of the human race, and steely-minded aristocrats never settle for less. Those who oppose us will be exiled. We shall raise vast private armies to defeat you. We shall conquer the world because warriors inspired by and banded together by homosexual love and honour are invincible.”
- “The family will be abolished, must be eliminated. Perfect boys will be conceived and grown in the genetic laboratory. They will be bonded together in a communal setting, under the control and instruction of homosexual savants.”
- “All churches who condemn us will be closed. All that is ugly and, vulgar and banal will be annihilated. For us, too much is not enough.”
- “The exquisite society to emerge will be governed by an elite comprised of gay poets. Any man
contaminated with heterosexual lust will be automatically barred from a position of influence.”
- “Heterosexuals will be tried in homosexual courts of justice and will become invisible men. We shall rewrite history. We shall portray the homosexuality of the great leaders and thinkers who have shaped the world. We will demonstrate that homosexuality and intelligence and imagination are inextricably linked, and that homosexuality is a requirement for true nobility.”
- “We shall be victorious because we too are capable of firing guns and manning the barricades of the ultimate revolution.”
Anybody who thinks that speaking against homosexuality is homophobic should think again. A careful reading of the above homosexual manifesto or “Gay Revolutionary” presented to the United States of American Congress and heavily backed by the government of the United States reveals that the content of the manifesto is being implemented to the letter in the USA and Europe. In their own words, “[W]e are everywhere; we have infiltrated your ranks”. Is this not true? They have infiltrated even the Church, leading to a break in fellowship within some Churches.
In the explanation by the revered Cardinal Turkson, corroborated by the Ghana Catholic Bishops
Conference, it is admitted that “[T]he long-held teaching of the Roman Catholic Church has been that while homosexual people are to be loved and respected and not be discriminated against, homosexual acts are intrinsically immoral and must be condemned.”(emphasis mine). If the Catholic Church, indeed, considers “homosexual acts are intrinsically immoral and must be condemned” then why the issuance of Fiducia Supplicans8 in 2023?
“TRUTH STANDS” – A CALL TO THE CHURCH IN GHANA
I humbly borrow from the Commonwealth Hall, University of Ghana, their motto coined from John
Donne’s Satire III, thus, “On a huge hill, cragged, and steep, Truth stands and he that will reach her, about must and about must go.”
Ghana, our beloved country, is at the crossroads of moral decadence. Children and teenagers cheat in examinations on their way to the top, and then we cry about corruption. Mismanagement of public resources is rampant. The Church of Pentecost, having picked the signal of the dire need for national transformation, rallied together religious leaders, top state officials, traditional leaders, government operatives and representatives of the public at the National Development Conference 2023 hosted by Apostle Eric Nyamekye, Chairman of The Church of Pentecost and President of the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC). Another conference organised for All Ministers in Ghana on Moral Vision for Ghana was hosted by Apostle Eric Nyamekye in equipping priests to lead the campaign for moral transformation in our beloved country. The Churches in Ghana are, therefore, expected to provide a clear path for the nation’s moral issues. Let it be made manifestly clear that any part of the body of Christ that fails to make its stance clear on LGBTQ+ issues in Ghana has forever lost the moral right to comment on any moral issue in Ghana. Additionally, failure to refuse LGBTQ+ from the pulpit is a clear surrender of the pulpit to the enemies of the Gospel. The stern voice of Moses still reverberates: “… who is on the LORD’S side? Let him come unto me …” (Exodus 32:26 KJV). The GPCC, per their President, Apostle Eric Nyamekye, has called on the President and Parliamentarians to speed up the anti-LGBTQ+ law (Daily Graphic 18/12/2023). The Christian Council and the Spokesperson of the National Chief Imam, Traditional Leaders, and all persons concerned with the future of our dear nation have made their stand clear. May we be guided by the unambiguous Word of God and the urgent need to save our dear country from moral doldrums. For the signing of the Anti – LGBTQ+ Bill, we call on the President to honour his promise to the Ghanaian people.
Nigro, S. A. (2016), THE HOMOSEXUAL MANIFESTO, Journal of Psychology and Clinical Psychiatry, Volume 6 Issue 1
Swift, M (1987), “Gay Revolutionary.” Reprinted from The Congressional Record of the United States
Congress. First printed in Gay Community News, February 15-21, 1987
Written by Pastor Daniel Essuman Koomson, Esq.
 Samuel A. Nigro, Medcrave, Journal of Psychology and Clinical Psychiatry, Volume 6 Issue 1
 Emphasis mine. Some reproduced scripts do not have the ‘Redeeming the Rainbow’ phrase but it isa term adopted by certain groups including Christians to reclaim the use of the rainbow. The problem is whether such groups or some of them are not being employed by the homosexual operatives. This is how desperate the situation is getting.