Ghana | Plans to force gay people to undergo conversion therapy


Moses Foh-Amoaning (YouTube)

A vocal anti-LGBTQ group in Ghana claims it has recruited around 400 people who identify as gay to undergo a so-called “gay cure” programme. It also plans to make this mandatory.

The National Coalition for Proper Human Sexual Rights and Family Values (NCPHSRFV) says that its dangerous programme will offer participants “counselling and reformation” that will, it says, change their sexuality.

The group’s leader, Moses Foh-Amoaning, told local media that the “400 men and women voluntarily surrendered themselves and registered with the coalition to undergo a sexual evangelism programme recently.”

Foh-Amoaning revealed that the coalition is planning to open a ‘Holistic Sexual Therapy Unit’ at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra which will also attempt to ‘cure’ gay people.

He added that there are also efforts to introduce a bill, titled ‘Who is on the Lord’s Side’, into parliament, which would force people found to be gay or lesbian to undergo ‘treatment’. “We will make our punishment corrective instead of punitive,” Foh-Amoaning said.

Consensual male homosexuality, described as “unnatural carnal knowledge”, is illegal in Ghana, with penalties including three years’ imprisonment.

The practice of “conversion therapy” is intended to change the sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression of LGBTQ people. It is grounded in the discredited belief that being LGBTQ is abnormal or immoral and can be changed through counselling or prayer.

The World Psychiatric Association and many other mental health bodies have asserted that trying to “cure” LGBTQ people doesn’t work and is both dangerous and unethical. The practice has been linked to mental health issues, including suicide.

Foh-Amoaning’s NCPHSRFV organisation was formed in December 2013. Its members include the Christian Council of Ghana, the Catholic Bishops Conference, the Ghana Muslims Mission, and the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council. Foh-Amoaning and the coalition have actively campaigned against LGBTQ equality in Ghana, claiming that there is a foreign neo-colonialist agenda to impose homosexuality on Africa.

A January 2018 Human Rights Watch report highlighted the devastating scale of discrimination and abuse experienced by LGBTQ people in Ghana, both in public and in family settings. It found that violence and discrimination against LGBTQ people are common.

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