Boy George is set to release a song in support of the LGBT community in Ghana. The British musician revealed this in an interview with Good Morning America on 3 April, and the announcement arrives in the wake of the latest widespread resistance to the group’s quest for acceptance in Ghana, including a police raid of the LGBT+ Rights Ghana centre in Accra on 25 February.
“I’m working today on a song for the LGBT community in Ghana,” George said during the interview. “And I’m going to put that out in a day or two to support them.”
The reggae track implores President Nana Akufo-Addo to come to the aid of the LGBT community, many of whose members say that they live in fear due to homophobia and discrimination.
“I sing to you, Mr Nana Akufo-Addo,” Boy George sings in a teaser video on his Instagram page. “We’ve got issues / let’s sing about them / hear our my feelings / I can’t live without them … Can you hear me Ghana? / We stand beside you to live that dream of being free / Can we be free till you are free?”
Ghana does not recognise same-sex marriages or civil unions. The Ghanaian criminal code criminalizes “unnatural carnal knowledge” as “sexual intercourse with a person in an unnatural manner or with an animal.”
On 27 February, Akufo-Addo reiterated that same-sex unions would not be legalized under his watch. “It will not be under the presidency of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo that same-sex marriage will be legal, that same-sex marriage will be legalised in Ghana. It will never happen in my time as president,” he said.
The plight of the LGBT community in the country has attracted solidarity from Ghana and around the world in recent months. Musician Wanlov The Kubolor, who has been highly vocal about LGBT rights in the country, said in a February interview with the Accra-based Peace FM that “Ghana’s problem is not LGBT, so we should focus on important issues and allow them to live their lives freely.”
International celebrities including actor Idris Elba, model Naomi Campbell and fashion designer Virgil Abloh also expressed “profound concern” in an open letter of support for LGBT people in Ghana.
The Australian high commissioner to Ghana, Gregory Andrews, recently suggested that an attempt by Ghana’s government to enact or pass legislation discriminating against the LGBT community would constitute a violation of human rights.
“We believe that to protect human rights sometimes our culture needs to adapt and that doesn’t mean being a different culture, it means accepting people for who they are, especially when they are not causing harm to anyone else,” he told Ghana’s Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, on 1 April after six MPs took steps to sponsor a bill to proscribe and criminalize the advocacy and practice of homosexuality.
“That is why on the LGBTQ+ issues, Australia will really encourage Ghana’s Parliament not to pass legislation that would discriminate the LGBTQ+ community or remove their rights or make it illegal for people to advocate for their human rights.”
Bagbin said: “I want to assure you that we have a very good Constitution. Our laws abhor any forms of discrimination. We also have the decision of the European Court of Human Rights to guide us in whatever we do. And so on the issue of LGBTQI+, definitely we already have a legal framework within which to work. We will not legislate to infringe on the human rights of people, but we will legislate to ensure that culture and traditions are not violated.”
Boy George’s song for Ghana is expected to be releasded in the coming days. He is also due to release exclusive art and music content via Crypto.com’s non-fungible token (NFT) platform.