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04/19/2007


Ghanaian President Would Rather Not Discuss Gay Marriage

Ghanaian President John Dramani Mahama paid a visit to Kennesaw State University for the school's final portion of its year long study of the Republic of Ghana. The Year of Ghana marked the 29th annual country study for the University; next year, Japan.

MahamaghanaIn his discussion with University president Dan Papp, Mahama was cagey regarding his opinions on same-sex marriage, opting to discuss the Ghanaian public's feelings on the matter.  Earlier this year, however, Towleroad reported on his more staunchly anti-gay stance: "Homosexual conduct which is unnatural carnal knowledge of one person or another is criminal and punishable by the laws of Ghana."

The Marietta Daily Journal reports:

Mahama was asked on Monday whether he supported gay rights in Ghana, specifically gay marriage. 

“Well, like you’re saying, even here the question is not settled,” Mahama said, referring to how some states in the U.S. allow gay marriage and some do not. “It’s controversial. And it’s the same, it’s controversial everywhere else, especially in Africa. It’s a difficult situation, but I guess it’s something that –– it’s very difficult to comment on because often it creates more problems. People have a certain cultural hostility towards it, but I believe that laws must prevail. For instance, people must not be beaten or killed because of their sexual orientation, but in my country there is a strong cultural hostility towards it.”

Mahama laughed when asked if he would support gay marriage in Ghana in the future. 

“It’s very difficult for me to ... I’d rather not comment on it,” he said. 

Mahama's visit to the University marks the first time the school has hosted a current head of state.


Ghanaian Musician Wants 'Romantic Date' With Homophobic Peer

WanlovGhanaian musician Wanlov the Kubolor did something pretty remarkable on Valentine's Day, something many musicians wouldn't do even here in the relatively more gay-friendly States.

In a country where gay sex remains illegal, Wanlov told a radio host, "Gays are cool and not people who are out to rape you or anything." The remark was directed at Blakk Rasta, another Ghanaian musician with a history of gay bashing.

For Valentine's Day, Wanlov said, "God should turn me into a gay so that I can go on a romantic date with Blakk Rasta."

"I want this wish because I want Blakk Rasta to know that gays are cool and not people who are out to rape you or anything," he said. "I only want to be gay and achieve that dream with Blakk Rasta and no one. After the date, then I will want God to make me straight again." It's not the most positive endorsement for gay love I've heard, but definitely worth a shout out.

Unfortunately, Blakk Rasta's set in his way. According to him, his Rastafarian beliefs prohibit him from even entertaining the idea of liking gay people.

"I am a Rastaman and we do not take gay relationships lightly," he said after Wanlov made his comment. "It is not as if we do not know that gays have their basic human rights, but we do not support what they do, as in having sexual intercourse with a person of same sex."

He went on, "It is not that we are saying they should be beaten up, but we say it is an abominable act and we do not want to associate with it. So for Wanlov to say that about me, I am sure he was having a big joke or something. But if he is serious, then I am sorry because he would get disappointed. It won't happen."

Wanlov, I'm sure, could do far better.


News: Tyler Clementi, Twitter, Stacey Campfield, Ghana

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Tennessee Senator Stacey "Don't Say Gay" Campfield starts his interview with TMZ just the way you'd think he would. By declaring that "the biggest bullies in the world out there is really the homosexual community."

Tylerclementi6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d On Monday, Rutgers will officially open the Tyler Clementi Center: "The work (at the Center) would examine not only bullying and youth suicides, but also topics like how young people use, and abuse, new technologies."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Justin Bieber goes horseback riding in LA.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d The White House releases proof that President Obama used a gun at Camp David.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Alabama gay rights group calls for removal of teacher who called gays "an abomination against God. Says GLBT Advocacy and Youth Services: "This is wrong, unethical, unprofessional, on so many levels, that there should be no question that if it is verified that this happened in a classroom, that this teacher should be removed from his position."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Senator Ann Romney?

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Frank Ocean won't be pressing charges against Chris Brown.

Lana6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Lana Del Rey covers the latest issue of Numéro Tokyo magazine.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Ghana President John Mahama: "Homosexual conduct which is unnatural carnal knowledge of one person or another is criminal and punishable by the laws of Ghana."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d The HRC backs Christine Quinn for mayor.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Twitter hacked: "The San Francisco company said it identified this week computerized attacks that may have accessed limited information such as Twitter user names, email addresses and encrypted passwords for 250,000 Twitter users."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Arrests made yesterday during protest of nudity ban in San Francisco.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d No shadow for Punxsutawney Phil means an early spring.


Uganda, Ghana, Malawi Push Back at UK Threat to Cut Aid Over Laws Which Criminalize Homosexuality

Several African nations are responding with anger after UK Prime Minister David Cameron threatened to slash one type of bilateral aid known as general budget support to countries that refuse to reform laws which criminalize homosexuality.

CameronMr Cameron said he had spoken with "a number of African countries" and that more pressure had been applied by Foreign Secretary William Hague, who deputised for him during parts of the summit. Some 41 nations within the 54-member Commonwealth have laws banning homosexuality. Many of these laws are a legacy of British Empire laws.

From the Nyasa Times:

Malawi government spokesperson Patricia Kaliati said it was “unfortunate” for Britain to have “pro-gay strings” to aid. She said homosexual acts are illegal in Malawi and noted that these laws are a legacy of British rule...MCC chairperson Bishop Dr. Joseph Bvumbwe,  Evangelical Association of Malawi (EAM) chairperson the Reverend Dr Lazarus Chakwera  and Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM) secretary Father George Buleya told reporters in Lilongwe that they were not happy with UK position on gay rights. Bvumbwe said British Prime Minister’s statements were 'unfortunate'  and they they regard them as 'unacceptable and provocative.'"

TettehGhana responds

(Ghana’s Trade and Industry Minister, Ms Hannah) Tetteh insists same sex relationships are unacceptable in African cultural set-ups and no amount of threats would make Ghana kowtow to UK’s threat. Interacting with a section of the media in Accra on Tuesday, Ms Tetteh stated that the western world has no right to force its cultural and moral orientations on Ghana and that the government will make its stance clear at the appropriate time. 'Every society has its norms and what it considers to be acceptable,' she said. 'In the Western world it is acceptable to have gay relationships and even move on to the next level to gay marriages, in our society it is unacceptable.'"

Uganda responds:

(Ugandan presidential adviser John) Nagenda accused Mr Cameron of showing an "ex-colonial mentality" and of treating Ugandans "like children". "Uganda is, if you remember, a sovereign state and we are tired of being given these lectures by people," he told the BBC's Newshour programme. "If they must take their money, so be it."...Mr Nagenda said he doubted that the Ugandan parliament would ever approve a bill which proposed the death penalty for some homosexual acts. "I believe it will die a natural death. But this kind of ex-colonial mentality of saying: 'You do this or I withdraw my aid' will definitely make people extremely uncomfortable with being treated like children," Mr Nagenda said.

Said Cameron: "This is an issue where we are pushing for movement, we are prepared to put some money behind what we believe. But I'm afraid that you can't expect countries to change overnight. Britain is one of the premier aid givers in the world. We want to see countries that receive our aid adhering to proper human rights. We are saying that is one of the things that determines our aid policy, and there have been particularly bad examples where we have taken action."


Talk Show Appearance Leads To Jail For Three Gay Men In Ghana

GhanaflagThree men, all lovers, appeared on a Jerry Springer-esque TV show in Ghana to dish about their romantic difficulties. The Ghanian police didn't like it. According to GhanaWeb:

The police, who were shocked at what transpired, quickly apprehended the three suspects without hesitation, as their several pleas to the senior police officers for pardon after their quarrels landed them in trouble.

The suspects were Inusah Issifu, 27, pork dealer, Samuel Lartey, a 19-year old student and Kingsley Quansah, a 25-year-old caterer. Two other persons also believed to be gay and connected to the arrested persons were currently on the run.

One was named Charles and the other Obolo. All three arrested persons were said to be residents of Tema. Some of the items retrieved from them at the time of the arrest were water-based lubricant suspected to be used for penetration, petroleum jell, dressing mirror, tooth brush and paste and dresses among others.

Superintendent Alex C. Wowolo, who confirmed the incident to Daily Guide, noted that on October 19, 2011, one of the arrested persons, Samuel, reported a case of unnatural carnal knowledge against Inusah and alleged that he suspected Inusah of lacing his drink with tranquilizers which made him fall asleep.

Samuel Lartey He told the police that while he was asleep, he felt some heaviness on him and woke up only to see Inusah sodomizing him and even though he wanted to free himself, he could not because his assailant was too heavy for him to overpower ...

... and so on. Later, Samuel admitted that he was Inusah's willing lover, and he "begged the police for mercy." You can read the whole sad mess here. Check out the comments section. Ghanians, in the main, don't seem to be fans of mercy. Although homosexual acts are only a misdemeanor in Ghana, the prevailing public sentiment is most succinctly expressed by the commenter who wrote:

Don't send them to prison. They will surely convert all inmates into homosexuals. The only solution is to CUT OFF THEIR MANHOOD and close up the open with plastic through surgery.

(HT: The Edge.)


Presbyterian Church of Ghana to Set Up Gay 'Cure' Centers

Following calls from a regional Ghanaian Minister to arrest all homosexuals, the Presbyterian Church of Ghana says it plans to "pray the gay away" at special therapy centers, Ghana News Agency reports:

Ghana The church has therefore called on the government to come out with a clear position on homosexuality in the country, to enable the church to offer the necessary support in helping to reduce the spread of the practice in the society.
   
The Moderator of the General Assembly of the PCG, Right Reverend Professor Emmanuel Martey said this at the commissioning of 36 Ministerial Probationers of the church at the Ranseyer Congregation, at Abetifi.
   
He said homosexuality was spreading fast in the society and urged the country’s leaders and Ministers to put up effective measures to check it and transform the destiny of the country.

Meanwhile, Think Progress LGBT reports that Commissioner on Human Rights and Administrative Justice Lauretta Lamptey says she was misquoted by media in recent reports and she does not favor the decriminalization of homosexuality:

I did not advocate that homosexuality should be decriminalized. My view is that, it currently isn’t clear whether it is even criminal and that if the view of the society is that it should be then, there should be a debate about that. [...] In my view I don’t think as a society we are ready to give homosexuals, lesbians the whole category of people any of those kind of rights.


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