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Ghana Has Passed A Bill That Would Make It A Crime For People To Identify As LGBTQ

The bill, criticized by human rights groups and activists, still has to be signed by President Nana Akufo-Addo before it becomes law.

Ghana has passed a bill that would make it a crime for people to identify as LGBTQ.

Ghana identify LGBTQ illegal
Same-sex couple, Naa Shika, 37, a fetish priestess, and her partner Kay, 27, a human rights activist, sit together during a discussion on the topic of Fiducia Supplicans, a Declaration approved by Pope Francis, that allows Catholic priests to bless same-sex couples, in Accra, Ghana. January 23, 2024. REUTERS/Francis Kokoroko

Those who are found guilty of engaging in LGBTQ sex acts could face up to 3 years in prison.

In addition, anyone who promotes or sponsors LGBTQ activities can be sentenced to up to 5 years in prison.

Ghana illegal lgbtq identity prison 3 years
Alex Kofi Donkor, Director of the LGBTQ+ Rights Ghana, pose for a photograph in a safe house, on November 8, 2021. (Photo by Nipah Dennis / AFP) (Photo by NIPAH DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Gay sex is already illegal in Ghana and can lead to three years in prison.

The bill, which has been criticized by human rights groups and activists, will now go to the president who can decide whether to sign it into law.

The president has avoided the debate over the bill but said previously that he would approve it if most people want him to.

ghana president
Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo looks on during an official welcoming ceremony in the courtyard of the Hofburg Palace in Vienna, Austria on January 30, 2024. (Photo by Joe Klamar / AFP)

Approximately 30 African countries currently criminalize homosexuality, according to the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA).

Ghana illegal LGBTQ
An LGBTQ community member wearing a rainbow flag leaves the Milimani high court in Nairobi, Kenya, after the verdict on scrapping laws criminalising homosexuality, on May 24, 2019. (Photo by TONY KARUMBA / AFP)

South Africa is the only nation on the continent that allows same-sex marriage, having legalized it in 2006.

LGBTQ identify illegal ghana
People with a rainbow flag take part in the annual Gay Pride Parade, as part of the three-day Durban Pride Festival, on June 30, 2018 in Durban. (Photo by RAJESH JANTILAL / AFP) (Photo credit should read RAJESH JANTILAL/AFP via Getty Images)

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