The Acting Director, Amnesty International Ghana, Mr Frank Doyi says Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) People have the right to associate with the same sex and therefore their rights must be respected as human beings.
He said although the Amnesty International Ghana respects the Constitution of Ghana and operates within the provisions of the laws of the country, its main focus is to protect the rights of every human being including gays.
The LGBT+ Community opened an office recently in Accra as a step to push for the rights of LGBT+ people in the country.
But after many individuals, civil society groups, religious groups and leaders called on the government to close it down, the police shut the office down on Wednesday Morning.
Speaking on Atinka TV’s morning show, Ghana Nie, hosted by Ekourba Gyasi Simpremu, Mr Doyi said,”When it comes to LGBTQI, what we want everyone to understand is that for us, our main concern is the fundamental human rights and freedom of all Ghanaians including Christians, Muslims, Traditional Believers, and even people in the LGBT Community; Like the constitution provides in Chapter 5, under the provision of fundamental human rights and freedoms.”
He added that,”…And so if we accept that people in the LGBT community are human beings, then precisely because of that, they also have the rights to enjoy, unless they do something that is against our laws.”
Mr Doyi noted that the laws exist because of sin, and the laws exist because of punishment, adding that the same laws indicate how to punish people when they go against it.
He said if they go against the laws, the enforcement agencies also have the right to deal with them.
“Our concern is that when we go against someone’s human rights, we have to address it, and so if the LGBT people engage or do anything against our laws, then we will expect that those who enforce the laws will deal with them. So as LGBT people are human beings, we protect their rights,” he said.
Speaking about the fact that unnatural carnal knowledge or same sex marriage is against the laws of the nation, Mr Doyi admitted that the constitution allows citizens to take action when they see someone go against the law as well as the security agencies.
However, he stated that the police has the responsibility to arrest people who engage in the act publicly adding that until the police is able to prove someone is doing something against the law, it will be difficult to arrest them.
Meanwhile, he said Amnesty International does not support any behaviour that is against the laws, but rather the human beings.
“We have to be careful that in our attempt to uphold the constitution, we do not infringe upon the rights of people. If someone is in his room and no one knows what is going on in the room, how can we say the person has gone against the law when he or she is in his room and have right to his privacy,” he said.
He added that persons who are accused of being gays must be investigated before any charges can be raised against them.
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