The director of Amnesty International Ghana Lawrence Amesu has condemned the beating and attempted lynching of gays or suspected homosexuals in Ghana saying it is “wrong and illegal on many levels”.
Mr. Amesu was speaking to Starr News following reports that a popular entertainment personality in Accra has been beaten to a pulp after he was allegedly caught attempting to have sex with a fellow man.
Kinto, as the young man is popular called, was reportedly attacked at New Town in Accra after Sunday’s AFCON finals between Ghana and Ivory Coast.
The Amnesty boss who was interviewed by Bernard Nasara Saibu via telephone onStarr Today on Tuesday evening said suspected gays should be reported to the police in conformity with the laws of Ghana instead of being attacked.
“To jump on people and start beating them up does not have any place in a democratic country like Ghana’s constitution, neither does it have a place in human rights records. “It is wrong on many levels and illegal too. It does not matter whether somebody is gay or not: that person still enjoys his or her fundamental rights”.
Over the weekend, a student of St Paul’s Senior high school was shot dead after police tried to control rioting students who were demonstrating against the school’s authorities for denying them the opportunity to lynch two of their colleagues who were allegedly caught engaging in homosexual acts.
Sharing the position of Amnesty International as an organisation, Amesu said “homosexuals also have the right to life”.
“Life is very precious, people should not just be allowed to take other people’s lives. If for example you realise the people who have been lynched are not actual homosexuals what would you do.”
“The police should take action against people who take the law into their own hands. The constitution does not allow any group of people to lynch others. So if we arrest a couple of people and take them through the justice system that would be a contribution to stopping this sort of mob action and instant justice,” he remarked.
He also said human rights violations should not be allowed in the country, otherwise lawlessness will prevail.
“We need to continue to do human rights education for people to understand that yes, there are some people who have a different way of doing things but that is not a reason why their lives should be taken by people who do not have the [mandate] to carry out such acts”.