Ghana passes bill jailing those who identify as ‘LGBTQ+’

President Of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo. Photo:

The Parliament of Ghana approved a bill on Wednesday that tightens restrictions on LGBTQ+ rights by introducing prison sentences for homosexuals and their advocates. The move has already drawn ire from Western aid groups, who described the bill as some of the harshest anti-gay laws in Africa.

  • If the bill passes, homosexuals could be sentenced to three years in jail. Those who promote homosexuality could get five years, as well as those who are caught engaging in homosexual sex.
  • The bill needs to be signed into law by President Nana Akufo-Addo

Why this Matters: Ghana’s hard stance against the promotion of homosexuality appears to be a line drawn in the sand as the African nation departs from Western-imposed neoliberal policies.

  • The bill is the latest in a wave of anti-gay legislation passed in Africa: Tanzania, Niger and Namibia have tightened such laws in recent years, while Uganda has adopted an anti-gay law that includes the death penalty.
  • Thirty-one countries on the continent criminalize consensual same-sex sexual activity, according to Amnesty. Many have experienced a surge in homophobic attitudes, behaviors and rhetoric in recent years, the rights group said in a report last year.

Context: Homosexual visibility and the prevalence of LGBTQ+ culture in the Western world continue to create issues for countries like the United States, which remains its chief exporter.

  • Things like “all-ages drag shows” and other pride-related events continue to be met with public scorn. Some even erupt into violence.
  • The mainstreaming of homosexuality has given way to countless headlines implicating homosexuals and their advocates in shockingly lewd or violent acts, sometimes against children.

In Kentucky, a “trans-identified” male care worker was spared prison time after sexually abusing a baby during a diaper change. In Colorado, a “trans-identified” male teenager was sentenced to 6 years in prison for planning a bloody rampage with an assault rifle and bombs.