Ghana will not be forced to legalize homosexuality despite pressure from the international community, President John Evans Atta Mills has stated.
President Mills reaffirmed the government’s position in reaction to a call by the UN Secretary General for the recognition of gay rights in Africa.
Ban Ki-Moon told African leaders who attended the just ended AU summit in Ethiopia that gays must not be treated as second class citizens or criminals.
But addressing journalists on arrival at the Kotoka International Airport, President Mills said the country’s position on gays will not change.
“Ghanaian society frowns on homosexuality, if the people’s interest is that we do not legalize homosexuality, I don’t see how any responsible leader can decide to go against the wishes of his people.”
He said he was “not surprised” about the stance taken by the UN Secretary General because his office is based in New York, a city that has accepted homosexuality.
He said though he could not tell how his fellow African leaders whom Mr Ban “appears to be addressing” received the information, he believed “we only listened to him”.
“There is no witch-hunting for homosexuals, nobody is going from place to place trying to identify homosexuals, [and] nobody has ever been denied a job in this country because he is a homosexual. That is their own problem. So when people talk about discrimination, they might be talking about some other societies, we (Ghanaians) don’t do it. So therefore you only listen and then you move on.”
He further stated: “The Secretary General has made his views known; we have also made our views known. So the value is the same.”
President Mills expressed gratitude to the African Union for unveiling a statue in honour of Ghana’s first President Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.
He said his suggestion for the creation of a Continental free trade area will boost trading among African countries.