The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has insisted that the house will not cease and desist from transmitting the anti-gay bill to the presidency.

On 19 March 2024, the Executive Secretary to the President, Nana Asante Bediatuo, wrote to the Clerk to Parliament demanding that it ceases and desists from attempting to transmit the Human Sexual Values Bill, 2021 to the President for necessary action in accordance with the Constitution.

The Executive Secretary argued that the Office of the President was aware of two pending suits challenging the bill. The letter further added that the Attorney General had advised the President not to take any steps in relation to the Bill until the matters raised by the suit are determined by the Supreme Court.

But Alban Bagbin argues that the President’s actions are unconstitutional.

“The President’s refusal to accept the transmission of the bill is, by all accounts, not supported by the constitutional and statutory provisions that guide our legislative process. The Constitution clearly delineates the steps to be followed once a bill has been passed by Parliament, mandating the transmission of the bill to the President for assent or rejection,” he addressed Parliament.

Alban Bagbin urged the President to follow through with Article 106(7) if he had any issues with the bill.

“Article 106(7) says, ‘Where a bill passed by Parliament is presented to the President for assent, he shall signify within seven days after the presentation to the Speaker that he assents to the bill or that he refuses to assent to the bill, unless the bill has been referred by the President to the Council of State under Article 90 of this Constitution,’ ” he reminded the President.

“Therefore, the refusal to even accept the bill for consideration falls outside the legal bounds established by our constitutional framework. It is incumbent upon the President to accept the bill and take the necessary action within the prescribed constitutional limits, whether that action is assent, refusal, or referral to the Council of State for advice,” Speaker Bagbin added.

“The Parliament of Ghana will comply with the existing legal framework and reject the attempts by the Executive Secretary of the President, through his contemptuous letter, to instruct the Clerk to Parliament, an Officer of Parliament whose position is recognizably under the Constitution. We shall not cease and desist!” he concluded.