Anti-Gay Bill- we will do the needful -Kyei-Bonsu
The Legislative arm of government, through the Majority Leader, Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, has given the assurance that they will not turn their back on the people they represent, regarding the anti-gay bill currently before them.
Speaking to journalist at the precincts of Parliament yesterday, Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu noted that “MPs are representatives of the people and the citizens of this country should be rest assured that parliament would not turn our back on them. We represent their interest in parliament and so we will do what is needful”.
Parliament’s assurance comes few days after the arguments concerning lesbians and gays received much attention, following a memorandum presented to parliament by some revered academicians to reject the passage of the bill that seeks to criminalise the act and promote proper human sexual rights and Ghanaian family values.
According to the opposers of the bill, who are made up of lawyers and professors, its current form infringes on the rights of those who practice the act in the country.
“The bill is a major step backwards for democracy, protection of minorities and of fundamental human rights in Ghana,” they argued.
Explaining why parliament will not turn its back on the constituents they represent, the Majority Leader said Chapter 11, Article 125 of the 1992 constitution states that “Justice emanate from the people and shall be administered in the name of the republic by the Judiciary, who shall be independent and subject only to this constitution.”
He said, it was not for nothing that the drafters of the constitution inserted the clause ‘justice emanate from the people’ and explained that it points to the fact that the will of the people must be respected.
Talking about the will of the people, the Leader of Government Business indicated that irrespective of one’s tribal or religious affiliation in the country, there are some values that guides all Ghanaians and those values abhor the practice of LGBTQI+.
“I really don’t know of any ethnic group in Ghana who would applaud LGBTQI+. So we have listened to the concerns expressed and parliament will do the needful. I am not sure any MP will be against the principle of this bill.”
He also indicated that even those who have argued that Ghana does not need a new law to fight LGBTQ+ since existing laws can be tightened to deal with the act, have indirectly accepted the principle of the bill and hence assured Ghanaians of MPs’ total support.
He, however, pleaded with those who contribute to radio and television programs on the bill to avoid emotional and sentimental contributions to the debate, because they cloud the rationality of the issue.
“My plea is that those who are making contributions and calling into radio stations and even speaking, we should cut off our emotions and sentiments, because if we do not do that, it clouds the rationality of the issues. So let’s cut out emotions and sentiments.”
The Leader indicated to civil society organisations, religious groups and all concerned citizens that one way by which their voices could be heard is through the submission of memorandum to committees that are put in charge of a particular bill.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said that the final decision on a whether or not a bill could be passed into a law is dependent on some few factors and memorandum is one of such factors.
Currently the Committee considering the bill is the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee, which has brought closure to receiving memos.
At the time it drew down the curtain, about 15 memos had been submitted in favor of the bill, among which were some Christian and Muslim groups.Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Pinterest