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Richard Sky files suit at Supreme Court, wants Anti-LGBTQI+ Bill declared null and void

A Private Legal Practitioner, Richard Dela Sky, has filed an application at the Supreme Court, seeking a declaration that the Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill, commonly known as the anti-gay bill, is null, void, and of no effect.

He contends that the passage of the bill violates Article 33(5) of the Constitution as well as the provisions of Articles 12 of the Constitution.

Mr Sky asserts that the bill’s provisions raise profound concerns regarding the potential infringement on the fundamental human rights and freedoms guaranteed to every Ghanaian by the Constitution.

Additionally, Mr Sky claims that the Speaker of Parliament contravened Article 108 of the Constitution, in light of Article 296 by admitting and allowing Parliament to proceed upon and pass “The Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill, 2024″ into law as the same imposes a charge upon the Consolidated Fund or other public funds of Ghana.

President Akufo-Addo is yet to assent to the bill and has stated that he will await the Supreme Court’s ruling before deciding on the bill.


Mr Sky, in his writ, also wants the Supreme Court to give an order restraining the President from assenting to the bill as such action will directly contravene the constitutional safeguards of liberties and rights of Ghanaians.

Read below Richard Dela Sky’s statement

PRESS STATEMENT
For Immediate Release
A WRIT TO UPHOLD THE PROVISIONS OF GHANA’S 1992 CONSTITUTION

1. 5th March 2024 — Oxford — In my capacity as a citizen of the Republic of Ghana, deeply committed to the principles of democracy and the rule of law as enshrined in our revered 1992 Constitution, I have initiated legal action in the Supreme Court of Ghana. This action is not a declaration of my personal stance on LGBTQI+ individuals per se, but a conscientious effort to ensure the strict adherence to and protection of the constitutional framework that governs our society.

2. On February 28, 2024, following the purported passage of “The Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill 2024,” I instructed a team of lawyers to file a writ at the Supreme Court of Ghana, challenging the constitutionality of the proposed legislation. This bill, in its essence and provisions, raises profound concerns regarding the potential infringement of the fundamental human rights and freedoms guaranteed to every Ghanaian by the Constitution.

3. The reliefs and orders sought in this legal action are as follows:
i. A declaration that upon the true and proper interpretation of Article 33(5) of the Constitution of 1992, in light of Articles 12(1) and (2), 15(1), 17(1) and (2), 18(2), and 21(1) (a) (b) (d) and (e) of the Constitution, the passage of “The Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill, 2024” by Parliament on 28th February 2024 contravened the Constitution and is to that extent null, void, and of no effect.

ii. A declaration that the Speaker of Parliament contravened Article 108(a)(ii) of the Constitution, in light of Article 296(a)(b) and (c), by admitting and allowing Parliament to proceed upon and pass “The Human Sexual Rights
and Family Values Bill, 2024” into law as the same imposes a charge upon the Consolidated Fund or other public funds of Ghana.

iii. A declaration that Parliament exceeded its authority under Articles 106(2) and 108(a)(ii) in passing “The Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill, 2024,” as the same imposes a charge upon the Consolidated Fund or other
public funds of Ghana.

iv. A declaration that, upon the true and proper interpretation of Articles 102 and 104(1) of the Constitution, Parliament lacked the requisite quorum to pass “The Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill, 2024.”

v. An order restraining the Speaker of Parliament and the Clerk to Parliament from presenting “The Human and Sexual Values Bill, 2024” to the President of the Republic for his assent.

vi. An order restraining the President of the Republic from assenting to “The Human and Sexual Values Bill, 2024,” as such action will directly contravene the Constitutional safeguards of liberties and rights of Ghanaians.

vii. An injunction barring any attempts to enforce the provisions of “The Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill 2024,” particularly those criminalising same-sex relationships and related advocacy efforts.

viii. Such further orders or directions as to this Honourable Court may seem to meet.

4. This legal challenge is grounded in the belief that every legislative process and the laws emanating therefrom must align with the constitutional mandates that guide our nation. It is imperative that we scrutinise and challenge any legislative action that appears to contravene the Constitution, to safeguard our democracy and the rights it guarantees to every citizen, regardless of their stance on any particular issue.

5. In my unwavering pursuit to combat breaches of the Constitution, promote human rights, and deepen the tenets of the rule of law, accountability, and responsible citizenship, I co-founded the Article II Initiative (a2i). This emerging think tank is, among other things, dedicated to protecting and defending the Constitution of Ghana and the rights enshrined therein. We aim to foster a robust constitutional culture in Ghana, empowering every citizen to uphold and defend the principles that safeguard our collective freedoms and dignity.

6. I call upon all Ghanaians to view this legal action in the light of a patriotic endeavour to preserve the integrity of our Constitution and the democratic values we hold dear. It is a testament to our collective determination to ensure that Ghana remains a beacon of democracy and the rule of law in Africa and around the world.

SIGNED
Richard Sky
-END-

Western Togoland: 4 more members jailed 17 years

Four more members of the Western Togoland Restoration Front and Homeland Study Group who were seeking to secede Volta Region from Ghana have been jailed for 17 years by the High Court in Accra.