Twitter pulls down Sam George’s anti-LGBTQI post

Social media platform Twitter has deleted a post by Ningo Prampram MP Sam George on LGBTQI criminalization in Ghana after it ruled that the views violated its policy.

The Member of Parliament had posted on July 24 that “I have been overwhelmed by the massive show of support even here on a ‘liberal’ platform like Twitter for our Bill on the LGBTQ+ menace.

“Homosexuality is not a HUMAN RIGHT. It is a sexual preference. Preferences are not absolute or unregulated. We shall pass this Bill through.”

The social media platform did not provide details for the removal of the post.

However, its policy on hateful conduct states:

“You may not promote violence against or directly attack or threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, caste, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or serious disease. We also do not allow accounts whose primary purpose is inciting harm towards others on the basis of these categories”.

Last Saturday, the lawmaker posted a screenshot of communication from Twitter which said a tweet of his had been reported but that the company was taking no action because “it is not subject to removal under Twitter rules.”

Sam George is leading an 8-Member Private Members’ Bill which is titled: “The Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values, Bill 2021.”

Among other things, the Bill criminalises homosexuality.

The controversial Bill holds severe punitive ramifications for those who are accused of belonging to the LGBTQ+ spectrum. Members and advocates of the community could be sentenced to 10-year imprisonment.

The Bill was presented to the Speaker a few weeks ago and is yet to be laid before the house for first reading after which the Speaker would refer the legislative proposal to a committee.

But the bill was leaked to the general public at the end of last week, provoking frantic debates on radio and on social media platforms.

Mr George’s post attracted a response from a British politician, Seb Dance, who engaged in a heated exchange on the issue of same-sex relationships and the wider topic of Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transgender, Queer, LGBTQ+.

May be a Twitter screenshot of 1 person and text

May be a Twitter screenshot of 1 person and text that says 'Duanyo @DaakyeBillo yeBillo Replying to @SebDance and @samgeorgegh he asked you a question on polygamy and you've still not replied -why don't you talk about that one too just as you're bn so tough on the LGBT+ bill... 9:03AM 7/24/21 Twitter for Android Likes Seb Dance @SebDance.27m Repl ing to @DaakyeBillo Because it's a nonsense red herring.'

May be a Twitter screenshot of 2 people and text

May be a Twitter screenshot of 1 person and text that says 'Seb Dance You can reach for absurd comparators all you like but it's not the sensible argument you think it is. There is certainly no science or common sense behind your bill: only hatred, needless pain and the pursuit of an arcane colonia legacy. @samge.. Sam 'Dzata' George You see how quick you retreat from the question of science and logic in your criminalisation of polygamy? Shows how weak your argument is. An arcane colonial legacy is you holding on to the vestiges of colonial economic suppression of the African continent. You should be ashamed.'

May be an image of 1 person and text

The debate on the Bill rages on.

MP for Old Tafo, Vincent Ekow Assafuah, for example, has expressed suspicions about the timing and purpose of an anti-LGBTQ bill championed by mostly members of the Minority in Parliament.

The first-time MP fears that the anti-LGBTQ agenda led by the Ningo-Prampram MP will make things hard for the executive to raise the monies Ghana needs on the international markets as well as encourage investments.

Assafuah said:

Just last week, Parliament had to approve a loan of about $200 million just for the impact of Covid or if you like, buy vaccines and what have you. These are monies that are coming from a certain source, the source as we are all aware, have been championing the cause of LGBTQ for a number of years, as we are all aware. Now, if the source at a point gets jittery because the people they are trying to help are not buying into their philosophy, it is going to have dire consequences on us as a nation.

But the MP’s sentiments seem to be shared by another member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Gabby Otchere-Darko, who tweeted over the weekend:

Gay+ activities are already illegal in our country. But, we aren’t known to hate. The President has given his word he won’t legalise it. This Bill only serves one purpose: to get Ghana blacklisted for promoting hate! Surely, the promoters of the Bill can’t say they aren’t aware!

But staunch anti- LGBTQ+ Campaigner Moses Foh-Amoaning has hit back.

The Executive Secretary of the National Coalition for Proper Human Sexual Rights and Family Values hold the view that the Bill does not promote hate.

“I’ve heard Gabby say that those of us who are promoting the Bill are exposing Ghana to be blacklisted for hate but if you read the law, you’ll notice that this is no way about hate,” he retorted.

“We are protecting everyone’s rights, including the rights of those LGBTQI activists. It is a bill that promotes proper human sexual rights and Ghanaian values. Those who accept that it is a medical condition, will not be sent to jail. Those that we are after are those who say it’s a lifestyle.

“We don’t hate. He should be very careful over the language that he uses. We can’t allow a degenerate moral behavior, packaged and superimposed on us, as a way of behaviour. That can’t be right. For my good friend Gabby, I’m sorry he should not make himself an object of colonialism,” he said in an interview on Joy FM.

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