Thank you very much, Mr Speaker for the opportunity to make this important statement on Upholding a Resilient Public Morality Standard in this land of our birth.
Mr Speaker, grounded on shared values of respect, dignity, equity and morality, Human Rights exist for every human being and, are exercised within the context of the law.
Article 11 of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana posits that the laws of Ghana shall comprise the Constitution, legislation, subsidiary legislation, existing laws before the 1992 Constitution and common law. Article 11 further explains common law as the customary law of the land.
In an ever-evolving world today, it is crucial for us as a people and nation-state to take every step possible to safeguard the values and morals that fundamentally distinguish and determine our identity.
Our Ghanaian society, since pre-colonial era has always upheld a culture of morality and decency and within our cultural and traditional contexts, the practices of Lesbianism, Homosexuality, and other related practices of LGBTQI have long been held as abomination and unreservedly so detested.
The concept of family for us as Ghanaians has always been and will always be initiated by marriage between a man and woman.
Mr Speaker, I must strongly emphasize that the fact that some jurisdictions recognize certain ways of life as acceptable standard, may not necessarily make it acceptable in another jurisdiction.
Globalization is purposed to augment the strengths and values of nation-states; certainly not meant to compromise the cultural and moral values therein.
Mr Speaker, the Constitution of Ghana clearly proscribes homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality and such acts that defy the core tenets of our beliefs, values, customs and traditions as a people.
On the Cultural Objectives of Ghana, Article 39(1) of the 4th Republican Constitution of Ghana clearly states:
“Subject to clause (2) of this article, the State shall take steps to encourage the integration of appropriate customary values into the fabric of national life through formal and informal education and the conscious introduction of cultural dimensions to relevant aspects of national planning.”
Article 39(2) further indicates: “The State shall ensure that appropriate customary and cultural values are adapted and developed as an integral part of the growing needs of society as a whole and in particular that traditional practices which are injurious to the health and well-being of the person are abolished.”
Fortified by Article 39 of the Constitution of Ghana afore-stated, I strongly contend that the practices of homosexuality, lesbianism and bestiality are potentially detrimental to the health and well-being of persons who may engage in such acts and accordingly must be deemed as inappropriate practices by the peoples of Ghana.
Furthermore, Section 104 of the Criminal Offences Act, 1960 (Act 29) proscribes ‘unnatural carnal knowledge’. Mr Speaker, some activists have contended that the provision of ‘unnatural carnal knowledge’ is anachronistic and no longer sufficient to adequately address the emerging trends of LGBTQI matters in the country.
Therefore, that school of thought is urging further strengthening of the laws to make them more robust, more encompassing, and more stringent in dealing with the practices of LGBTQI.
Among the multi-religious faiths and varied traditional and customary values across the country, an overwhelming consensus is established on the position of the nation in utter rejection of the practices and advocacy of LGBTQI, in conformity with the customary law and tenets of faiths in respect of public morality.
Contrary to the individual idiosyncrasies that persons practicing LGBTQI are born so to exhibit LGBTQI tendencies, many credible research findings have converged on the conclusion that no biological basis accounts for LGBTQI orientation and that LBGTQI is a socially acquired lifestyle.
We live in a majoritarian society with consensus on customs and acceptable standard of public morality; which consensus has determined the practices and advocacy of LGBTQI by the relative minority in society as incongruent with our norms.
The position of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in line with upholding the laws of Ghana against the pressures of LGBTQI has been made without equivocation, just as was made by some former presidents, particularly, President John Agyekum Kufuor and President John Evans Atta-Mills.
While I commend the Security Agencies for their efforts in the closure of LGBTQI office in Accra, I hereby call for a sustained, and effective collaboration among all relevant stakeholders, to curb the threat to our public morality.
Mr Speaker, may I conclude by urging this august House respectfully, to build consensus on the consideration of a possible Private Members Bill to provide greater clarity and unambiguity to proscribe the practices and advocacy of LGBTQI in line with our norms and values as a people.
Mr Speaker, I am indeed grateful.