“Choice, not chance, determines your destiny. It’s up to you to decide what you are worth, how you matter, and how you make meaning in the world. No one else has your gifts–your set of talents, ideas, interests. You are an original. A masterpiece.” – Regina Brett.
Ghana has a choice to make, it is to either accept the minority people who have decided to engage in same sex marriages which clearly violates our customs and traditions or banish them in order not to soil the good name we have amongst our neighbours.
The public debate about the legalization of Lesbians, Gay, Bisexuals, Transgender, Queer and Intersex (LGBTQI) has gained more grounds with Religious bodies such as Christians, Islam and Traditionalists on one side, and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and Think Tanks on the other side.
Some people have argued that this is a debate on love and hate. They argue that having affection for your kindness has everything to do with love so no one has the right to hate someone for loving his/her kindness. So long as the Constitution of Ghana gives everyone the right to an association means they can belong to where their hearts are.
It is also worthy to note that, the European Union, United Kingdom and the United States are strong advocates for the legalization of LGBTQI and as a matter of fact, they are big donors to Ghana and the rest of Africa who have contributed a lot to the growth of our democracy, health care, infrastructure etc.
Ghana stands at the risk of losing all the aids from the above-mentioned countries that were present at the ceremonial opening of the LGBTQI office in Tesano-Accra as a strong indication of endorsement to the minority group who have emerged to face their fears. They have a right to resist oppressors rule and have a right as citizens to defend the good name of Ghana on the international front.
It will be recalled that President of the Republic, Nana Akufo-Addo on several occasions have noted that his government has no intentions to legalize same-sex marriage. However, there hasn’t been a strong group of people who have emerged to crusade for the legalization of the act which his government will consider if it comes to the fore.
A simple definition of law says that Law is a sophisticated set of rules and regulations for administering the complex relationship between the individuals on one side and between the individuals on the state on the other side. It is a regulator, a controller and a protector.
If the above definition is anything to go by, then let’s refer to what the law says about LGBTQI in Ghana. The Criminal Code 1960, section 104 – unnatural carnal knowledge distinguishes between non-consensual and consensual sexual intercourse in “an unnatural manner” – the former being a “first degree felony” and the latter a misdemeanour.”
Ghana is a sovereign state and we all must uphold and defend the good name by implementing exactly what the provisions of the Constitution says until there’s a need to amend the criminal code to allow LGBTQI to be established fully in the country.
The religious bodies have aligned with the government to fight against its establishment but a school of thought argues that they can do better by using half of this energy to fight against corruption. Others have also argued that if LGBTQI is legalized in this country, then prostitutes and armed robbers should also be given license to operate in the country.
After all, it is right to uphold your right to associate with LGBTQI because it’s your choice but it is also wrong to associate with LGBTQI because it is criminal as per the criminal code of the country.