It is very obvious that one group happy with the election of John Dramani Mahama as Ghana’s 4th President of the fourth Republic is the international gay community.
Coming on the heels of the visit of the controversial Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, to Ghana last week, the New Statesman can confirm that Germany’s Vice Chancellor, who also doubles as Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle, who is gay, is scheduled to visit Ghana soon to hold talks with President Mahama.
Mr Westerwelle made the news in September 2010 after formalizing his union with his long-term partner and businessman Michael Mronz in Bonn. Westerwelle, 51, and his 46-year old partner Mronz, who organises sports events, met in 2003 and have been a couple ever since.
Unconfirmed reports reaching the New Statesman indicates that John Mahama’s liberal disposition towards the gay community enabled him get money to run his 2012 presidential campaign.
Upon assuming office, President Mahama has had to apologise to gay pal and lobbyist, Andrew Solomon, a day after his Information Minister, Mahama Ayariga, put out obviously incorrect information about the relationship between President Mahama and Mr Solomon.
Having known President Mahama for eight years, Andrew Solomon has called on President John Mahama to take a lead role in promoting gay and lesbian’s rights in the West African sub-region.
Solomon says the mere fact that there is a national debate on gays and lesbian rights in Ghana, even if the debate is to have gays lynched, is a meaningful progress for him.
“When my husband-to-be (John Habich) and I met the Ghanaian politician John Dramani Mahama at a friend’s wedding near Accra eight years ago, I liked him immediately,” explained Andrew Solomon in his Op-ed write-up in the New York Times.
According to Mr Solomon, when President Mahama’s equally controversial book, ‘My First Coup d’Etat’, was published in the United States, he did some publicity for his friend’s book.
Apparently, Andrew Solomon was so impressed with the unconventional content of the book published by an African politician.