Panic grips LGBTQI+ community in Cape Coast as local media launch misinformation campaign that also threaten safety of organisations and activists

Cape Coast, Central Region, Ghana – A recent chieftaincy brouhaha surrounding the installation of prominent human rights defender, Davis Mac-Iyalla, as Amankorehen of the Yamonransa Nkusukum Traditional Area, has led to increased attacks against the LGBTQI+ community in Cape Coast. Names of sexual health and human rights organisations, as well as human rights defenders and prominent personalities believed to be LGBTQI+, have been mentioned on various radio stations in the region.

Listen to this audio excerpts from the radio recordings. As a result of safety concerns, we cannot share the full audio recordings.

According to a leader of a Cape Coast-based organisation who wishes to remain anonymous, multiple radio stations in the area are involved in the anti-LGBTQI+ campaign, which mainly involves spreading misinformation and falsehoods. The leader added that the situation has escalated so suddenly and quickly that it is now affecting local LGBTQI+ community members and health intervention programs meant to support them.

“It’s so sudden how things have escalated within this short period and how it is affecting the local LGBTQI community members. Now calls are going through to the radio stations where people are mentioning names and giving information about people and stuffs. To the extent of affecting health intervention programs meant to support community members. There is a serious panic in Cape Coast right now, which we need to address,” the leader told Rightify Ghana in a WhatsApp message. The leader’s organisation has closed its office until tensions subside.

The anti-LGBTQI+ campaign has caused fear and panic among community members and leaders in the region.

In conclusion, the recent events surrounding the installation of Davis Mac-Iyalla as Amankorehen of the Yamonransa Nkusukum Traditional Area have brought to the forefront the ongoing struggle for LGBTQI+ rights in Ghana. The community and its allies must come together to address the situation and work towards a safer and more inclusive future for all.

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