Ghana’s Anti-LGBTQI+ Bill Not “discriminatory”: Christian Leaders to U.S. Ambassador


Ghana’s Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill (anti-LGBTQI+ Bill) is not “discriminatory,” Christian leaders in the West African nation have said, responding to concerns that the U.S. Ambassador to Ghana raised regarding the 2021 proposed legislation. 

On August 10, the U.S. Ambassador to Ghana, Virginia Palmer, cautioned Ghana against passing a legislation that she said would inconsistent with the “welcoming, tolerant society” that the country is. 

“Ghana is a very welcoming, tolerant society, with lots of interreligious, interethnic harmony, and that is what makes Ghana strong, stable, and attractive for investment. I hope it stays that way with regards to the LGBT community,” Ambassador Palmer told journalists on the sidelines of the August 10-11 U.S.-Ghana Business Expo 2023.

The American Ambassador added, “There is money to be made if the color of your money is green or red; it is Ghanaian, but if there is discrimination or worse, then that will send a signal to not just LGBT investors but other American investors that Ghana is less welcoming than I am telling people that it is now. So, I hope it will stay welcoming.”

In a statement shared with ACI Africa Thursday, August 24, members of the three Christian Ecumenical Councils in Ghana, the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC), the Christian Council of Ghana (CCG), and the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference (GCBC) invite the U.S. and the other Western countries to “stop the incessant attempts to impose unacceptable foreign cultural values on us.”


“The leadership of the afore-mentioned Ecumenical Councils appreciate the Ambassador's recognition that Ghana is a very welcoming and tolerant society with lots of inter-religious and inter-ethnic harmony. However, we also wish to reiterate that like any welcoming and tolerant society, our tolerance is not unlimited,” the church leaders say.

They add, “Just as the U.S. and other so-called developed countries have their cultural values which inform what is acceptable and/or unacceptable within their respective country jurisdictions, Ghana as a sovereign nation, also has cultural and religious values that guide, inform and guarantee the sustenance, harmony and cohesiveness of our communities, and we do not intend to compromise those values for LGBTQI+ investors.”

“There is nothing discriminatory in the Anti- LGBTQI+ Bill which should scare the well-meaning business investor. Every country is guided by laws and regulations which are in tandem with their cultural values and aspirations,” Christian leaders in Ghana say in their statement dated August 17.

They continue, “We wish to assure the American Ambassador and all others that Ghana will continue to be inclusive. But inclusivity cannot, and should not be absolute and all-embracing. Indeed, no country or society is absolutely inclusive; there are, and there will always be laws and regulations that define ‘exclusives’ for every society.”

“We find it very unacceptable that as a sovereign country, such intimidating insinuations are being made by high ranking and respected officials,” the church leaders say, adding that “Christian, Muslim, Traditional and other minor religious groups constitute over 95 percent of Ghana's population.”

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“All these religious groups mentioned stand together in abhorring the despicable lifestyle practices and behaviors of LGBTQI+,” they further say.

The Christian leaders in Ghana “respectfully implore the U.S. and the other Western countries to stop the incessant attempts to impose unacceptable foreign cultural values on us.”

“As a people, our cultural values and practices must be respected; we do not want the promotion, advertising, practice and/or imposition of LGBTQI+ behavior and practice in Ghana,” the Church leaders add.

They also call on members of the Parliament of Ghana to “proceed with speed in undertaking all the necessary actions required to pass the Bill into Law.”

Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.