Virginia Palmer, the United States Ambassador to Ghana, has issued a warning that the passage of the anti-LGBTQ law could have repercussions for international trade and investment in the country.
According to Ambassador Palmer, the fact that a number of American corporations are making preparations to invest in Ghana does not change the fact that any law that discriminates against LGBTQ+ individuals has the potential to damage Ghana’s reputation and make the country less appealing to investors.
US Ambassador warns Ghana over anti-LGBTQ+ Bill
Ambassador Palmer made these remarks to the media in Accra: “Many different ethnic communities contribute to Ghana’s strength, stability, and attractiveness as a location for investments.” Regarding the LGBTQ community, I really hope things continue as they have been. If it is discrimination, then that will send a signal not just to LGBTQ investors and exporters but also to other American companies.
However, they should be handled to make the colour of the money green or red if it is Ghanaian. “Then Ghana will be less welcoming, so I hope it stays that welcoming,” said Virginia Palmer, the United States Ambassador to Ghana. “I hope it stays that welcoming.”
The Anti-LGBTQ+ Bill is currently being considered by Parliament with the intention of criminalising behaviours related to the LGBTQ+ community, prohibiting the promotion and advocacy of LGBTQ+ content, and providing safety and support for children and individuals involved in LGBTQ+ concerns.
In July 2023, the Supreme Court of Ghana rejected an appeal that sought to prevent the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, from continuing with the discussion of the bill. The application had requested an injunction.
Dr. Amanda Odoi, a researcher, was the one who submitted the application, in which she contended that the continuous examination of the measure constitutes a violation of Article 108 of the Constitution of 1992.
According to the provisions of Article 108 of the Constitution, a bill or motion cannot be considered by Parliament if the person presiding believes it will result in taxation, a charge on the consolidated fund, or a charge on other public funds, unless the president presents it. This provision applies only if the president presents the bill or motion.
It is the applicant’s claim that the bill, when taken in its totality, will impose a charge on the consolidated fund and that this bill violates the Constitution of 1992 because it is a private members bill.
This legal action contributes to the ongoing debate and controversy that have surrounded the anti-LGBTQ+ law, with various parties voicing contrasting viewpoints on the proposed piece of legislation.