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NewsSam George calls out BBC over Akufo-Addo’s refusal to sign anti-LGBTQ+ law

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Sam George calls out BBC over Akufo-Addo’s refusal to sign anti-LGBTQ+ law

Member of parliament for the Ningo-Prampram Constituency, Honourable Sam George, has publicly challenged the BBC’s reporting on President Nana Akufo-Addo’s stance regarding the controversial anti-LGBTQ+ bill.

BBC News Africa’s Twitter handle recently highlighted President Akufo-Addo’s hesitation in signing the bill. Their article bore the headline, “Ghana’s Anti-LGBTQ+ Bill: Akufo-Addo to Wait for Supreme Court Ruling.”

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The accompanying caption underscored that Ghana’s leader would withhold assent until the highest court in the land ruled on the bill’s constitutionality.

“Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo says he will not assent to an anti-gay bill until the Supreme Court rules on its constitutionality. The bill was backed by both of Ghana’s main political parties but cannot become law without the president’s approval,” BBC News Africa tweeted.

In a succinct tweet directed at BBC Africa, Sam George, also a major sponsor of the bill, pointed out an omission in their coverage.

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Sam George’s tweet suggests that the president’s assent is not necessary for the bill to become law, and that parliament can override his decision if he refuses to sign the bill

He wrote, “@BBCAfrica, point of correction. Article 106(8)(9)&(10) spell out how Parliament can proceed to make the Bill law even when the President decides not to assent to the Bill. Cheers.”

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The BBC has not yet responded to Sam George’s tweet.

The anti-LGBTQ+ bill, titled the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill 2024, was passed by parliament on 28 February 2024.

The bill proposes penalties for anyone who identifies as LGBTQ+, engages in same-sex relations, or promotes LGBTQ+ rights and activities.

It has been widely condemned by human rights activists, civil society organisations, religious groups, and foreign governments as a violation of the fundamental rights and freedoms of LGBTQ+ people and a threat to Ghana’s democracy and rule of law.

However, President Akufo-Addo’s reluctance to sign it has fueled controversy. His assertion that the Supreme Court’s ruling must precede any action on the bill has sparked discussions within Ghana and beyond its borders.

As the nation awaits the court’s verdict, tensions remain high, and citizens closely monitor developments. The bill’s fate hangs in the balance, and its potential impact reverberates far beyond Ghana’s shores.

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