Anti-LGBTQI bill: Parliament is right – Catholic Bishops

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In a statement signed by its president Most Rev. Matthew Kwasi Gyamfi, the Catholic Bishops Conference has endorsed the decision of the Parliament of Ghana on the anti-LGBTQI bill. The bill currently before the house is almost nearing its passage stage with strong calls from the Minority for the bill to be passed into law as soon as possible.

Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin who is a strong supporter of the bill has assured that the anti-LGBTQI bill will be passed before parliament goes on recess for the Christmas holidays. Offering significant support to the bill is the GCBC, the leadership of the largest church in the country.

The statement by the GCBC says the anti-LGBTQI bill before “Parliament is in the right direction, as it seeks to enact laws against criminal homosexual acts”.

According to the GCBC, while persons who identify as homosexuals should not be discriminated against, their acts if deemed criminal need to be punished. The conference said that just like there are punishments for a heterosexual man who rapes a girl, there should be punishments for sexual who commit similar crimes as well.

In that light, the GCBC said: “Lawmakers may decide that a man marrying a man or a woman marrying a woman is not in the interest of the nation since, in the long term, it will have an effect on the size of the population of our country if many people do this”.

Based on the notion that the promotion of homosexuality could harm the interest of the nations, the conference said “…it will be right for the lawmakers to criminalize such homosexual actions by punitive measures. Thus, we can say that 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.”

“In this connection, 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 bill aims to provide for proper human sexual rights and Ghanaian family values, proscribe LGBTQ+ and related activities, and provide for the protection of children, persons who are victims or accused of LGBTTQQIAAP+ and related activities, and other persons. We commend our lawmakers for the effort and time spent on this bill.”

Also, the conference expressed that “when passed into law, it will indeed promote proper human sexual rights and authentic Ghanaian family values which are under threat from homosexual acts. It is also the hope of the Church that the bill will impose punitive measures that are commensurate with the crimes committed.”

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