US Ambassador hopeful homosexuality will be legalized within next decade
The United States (US) Ambassador to Ghana, Robert P. Jackson is hopeful that homosexuality will be legalised in Ghana within the next decade.
Ambassador Jackson in an interview with Ghanaweb stated that he was hopeful all Ghanaians regardless of their sexual orientation will enjoy the same rights within the next decade.Follow @Graphicgh
He said: "We are not asking that homosexuality be legalised. I want to be clear about that. I hope that within the next decade or so, that every Ghanaian regardless of sexual orientation will enjoy the same rights and be treated the same way".
According to him, the US administration is not asking for it to be legalised but he accepts that it will a long process.
"This is a long process and it was a long process in my country. Homosexual marriage has only become law in very recent years and prior to that, when I was growing up nobody talked about homosexuality.
"Everyone who was gay suffered enormous discrimination and that has changed in the United States because people have a better understanding of the science and of the issues now".
He said that a greater understanding of "science and issues" will make Ghanaians more tolerant of homosexuals.
"I think as Ghanaians gain a greater understanding of the science and the issues, they will also be tolerant because this is a very tolerant country because this is a very tolerant country and this is one area where Ghana's tolerance seems very limited".
Currently, under Ghanaian criminal law (Chapter 6 of the Criminal Code, 1960, as amended by The Criminal Code (Amendment) Act, 2003) same-sex sexual activity among males is illegal.
"More gays in Ghana than Ghanaians know about"
Ambassador Jackson also claimed that there are far more homosexuals in Ghana than Ghanaians know about but they are private about their sexuality because of societal norms.
"I believe that everyone should enjoy the same human rights and personally I believe that people are born either heterosexual or homosexual, It is not a lifestyle choice.
"Statistics indicate that probably, 10 per cent of people are born gay... I think there are far more gays in Ghana than Ghanaians realise... but because of societal attitudes, they keep their sexuality very private.
"But, the United States is not asking anyone to change their religious beliefs or to legalise homosexuality, we are asking that all people be treated the same, that they have the same human rights and the same right to privacy".