By Melanie Nathan, April 19, 2013.
Two reports have appeared out of Ghana, using the usual anti-gay rhetoric to describe the mass expulsion of students from local schools. Falsely blaming recruitment, the expelled were likely forming support groups.
The reports reads:
“19 ‘homosexual’ students of Opoku Ware SHS sacked
Date Posted: April 15, 2013: 19:55
Source:Ghana | RadioXYZonline.com
19 students of Opoku Ware Secondary High School in the Ashanti regional capital of Kumasi have been dismissed for practicing homosexuality in the school.
According to XYZ News’ Ashanti regional correspondent, Isaac Bediako Justice, four out of the 19 students are in their first year while 15 are second and final year students.
According to him, authorities of the school decided to keep the issue out of the public domain since the students were caught some three weeks ago.
A teacher who confirmed the story stated parents of all the students involved were contacted before their children were expelled from the school.
According to reports, the students had managed to form a society on campus and regularly meet to discuss how to convince more students to practise the act.
Recently over 34 girls were dismissed from the Wesley Girls Senior High School in Kumasi for engaging in lesbianism.”
The Herald Report:
” 34 Female Students Dismissed Over The Act As “Supi” Love Letters Pop Up-
The Kumasi Wesley Girls’ Senior High School, popularly referred to as “K Wey Gey Hey”, one of the revered and leading second cycle females’ institutions in the country is on the brink of losing its social and moral standing in the Ghanaian society over the despicable act of lesbianism.
A month long investigations carried out by The Herald have established a worrying revelation that at the time religious groups and civil societies are waging a relentless war against same sex sexual intercourse, the students of the school established by the Methodist Church, have been indulging in the bestial and detestable act of lesbianism.
According to some of the students it is common to see forms three and four female students making sexual advances to their junior female colleagues in forms one and two.
It also emerged during The Herald’s investigations that about 34 female students in the boarding house who were found guilty of this sacrilegious practice, were last term, dismissed from the boarding house and made day students.”
Under Ghanaian criminal law, same-sex sexual activity among males is illegal. It is uncertain whether same-sex sexual activity among females is illegal. Chapter 6 of the Criminal Code, 1960, as amended by The Criminal Code (Amendment) Act, 2003, provides:
Section 104. Unnatural Carnal Knowledge.
(1) Whoever has unnatural carnal knowledge —
(a) of any person of the age of sixteen years or over without his consent shall be guilty of a first degree felony and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than five years and not more than twenty-five years; or
(b) of any person of sixteen years or over with his consent is guilty of a misdemeanour….
(2) Unnatural carnal knowledge is sexual intercourse with a person in an unnatural manner.. Under Section 99, “unnatural carnal knowledge shall be deemed complete upon proof of the least degree of penetration”.
According to Section 296 of the Criminal Procedure Code, which applies because of Section 1 of the Criminal Code, a misdemeanour is punishable by imprisonment for not more than three years.
Section 12(2) of Chapter 5 of the Constitution of Ghana provides that, “Every person in Ghana, whatever his race, place of origin, political opinion, colour, religion, creed or gender shall be entitled to the fundamental human rights and freedoms of the individual contained in this Chapter but subject to respect for the rights and freedoms of others and for the public interest.”
Although we have not been able to verify the stories from the student’s perspectives, this is clearly another instance of hyping homosexuality negatively, to fit in with the anti-gay sentiment and agenda of authorities. While these students are being accused of homosexuality, and being lesbian (the latter which may not even illegal) so called promotion and recruitment is not an illegal act and hence if acts of sex are not proved, these expulsions have no legal basis. The idea that support groups recruit for the purposes of trying to turn gay students into homosexuals, defies truth and taps into the myth and ignorance which surrounds ignorance about gay youth, while fueling the anti-gay sentiment in that country.
I certainly do not want to be one to perpetuate that myth by sensationalizing the negative commentary surrounding this situation, yet have felt duty bound to report this as a matter of information, so that we can understand the profound need to educate about the simple fact – that gays cannot be recruited – you are either gay or not – and that young people need support groups. How one separates the accusations of recruitment from the reality of being gay, remains a great challenge in many of the African countries.
- Ghana uproar: 53 students ejected for homosexuality? (76crimes.com)