The Anti-Gay Bill must be tested at the Supreme Court – Afenyo Markin

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Majority Leader Alexander Afenyo Markin is of the view that someone must test the constitutionality of the anti-gay bill passed by parliament.

He is of the view that incarceration cannot be a way of reforming such persons with this kind of orientation.

“Issues that Members of Parliament led by my good self raised ought to be tested by the Supreme Court of the land. We are a growing democracy. This is not an emotional journey, this is about laws that have to do with the rights of citizens.

The test here is whether or not a sexual right that has in itself been brought to question should lead to a criminal penalty. In other words, if, as a nation, we say our value systems do not support man-to-man relationships or woman-to-woman relationships, are we saying that the means of reforming people with that orientation is to incarcerate them?

How does this position stand in accord with the Constitution? Also with the issue of advocacy, saying that a media house cannot take certain steps. How do we juxtapose that with matters of the Constitution? All these are matters that I believe if they are tested in the Supreme Court, will bring matters to a good rest,” he said while addressing the press.

Ghana’s Parliament passed the anti-gay bill today, February 28, 2024.

The bill will be sent to the President of Ghana, who is expected to sign it into law.

In the past few months, the president has refused to sign a private member bill passed by parliament because of a supposed financial obligation that comes with it.

Under the new bill, a maximum five-year jail term for forming or funding LGBTQ+ groups will be slapped on persons found guilty.

Lawmakers did not agree to replace the prison term with community service and counselling.

Here is the first draft of the bill which underwent amendments.

The bill, which was supported by both political parties in Parliament, had the backing of the Christian community, the Muslim community, and the traditional community.

It could be remembered that the Speaker was petitioned to allow for public voting to ensure that legislators who voted against it were made known.

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