The Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference (GCBC) has reinforced its stance against lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgenders and queers (LGBTQ+) activities in the country.
According to the President of the Conference, Most Reverend Philip Naameh, the Catholic Church continues to support the Proper Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill that seeks to criminilise such activities.
“The position of the Catholic Church on LGBTQIA+, which I have stated in several interviews with the media has remained the same; that, such practices are against not only Christian values, but Muslim and traditional values as well”, he said.
Most Reverend Philip Naameh, who is the Metropolitan Archbishop of Tamale in the Northern Region, laid the emphasis at a press conference held in Accra yesterday to refute an allegation levelled against him.
The priest is alleged to have stated in a CNN interview culled by some local news portals that the country risks becoming Muslim-majority country if lesbians, gays, LGBTQ+ activities are allowed.
The viral story came on the heels of GCBC’s participation in a presentation of memorandum to parliament in support of the anti-LGBTQ+ bill by a coalition of Christian groups.
The bill, being opposed by another coalition of academics, professionals and civil society organisations seeks to criminalise and impose jail terms on LGBTQ+ and people who promote such activities in the country
“I wish to state categorically and for the avoidance of doubt that the statement attributed to me is false and does not in any way reflect the actual content of the conversation which has to do with the church’s support for the bill.
Most Rev Naameh said in the said interview with CNN, did not cause any religious division or attempt to destroy the religious cohesion that has existed in the country as being portrayed in the viral reports.
“It is also important to add that for the past 44 years that l have been a priest, I have always promoted peaceful coexistence, religious tolerance and harmony amongst all people.
“In addition, I have the feeling that they only sought to cause disaffection for me and break the front of the formidable Coalition behind the Proper Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill,” he said.
Most Rev Naameh, therefore, called on the public to disregard with contempt “the fabrications and distortions” which were intended to distract the collective quest to make sure the bill is passed.
Over the years, he said, the Conference had insisted on mutual collaboration among Christians, Muslims, Traditional Leaders and all other faith-based organisations in the country for peaceful coexistence and the common good.
BY JONATHAN DONKOR