Bonang Slammed for Ghana Visit Amidst Anti-LGBTQ+ Bill Uproar


Bonang has come under fire for not having her queer fans’ backs after visiting Ghana this week (Photos: Bonang Matheba / bonang_m / Instagram)

Another celebrity “ally” disappoints. South African media personality Bonang Matheba is accused of snubbing her large queer fan base by visiting Ghana, which has passed a bill to outlaw identifying as LGBTQ+.

Earlier this week, several social media posts indicated that Bonang was in the West African country to attend the Women of Valour event as a speaker on 7th March.

Taking social media selfies at OR Tambo airport before the flight, the celebrity flaunted an ensemble composed of pieces from high-end labels including Balenciaga, Khy, Versace, and Saint Laurent.

The actress, television and radio presenter, and luxury lifestyle entrepreneur later also shared an image of herself stepping out of a limousine in a blue gown in Accra, Ghana. She soon came under fire for not having her queer fans’ backs.

@MasaDiamond_ tweeted sarcastically: “Bonang looking fabulous in Ghana 🇬🇭 mmm get that coin girl, while the gays are dying you’re LIVING!!!”

Some sought to defend Bonang by pointing out that she’d been booked for the event far in advance.

“But Bonang posted about attending this talk weeks ago. She has made a commitment and should fulfil it? I’m disgusted by Ghana but Bonang catching smoke for honouring an invite she accepted months ago is..? Unfair on her,” said @calbluedaniels.

@MoreTwoLyf, however, argued that this was no excuse. “Quite disappointed in Bonang. Even if the booking was confirmed a long time ago; the news about Ghana’s anti-LGBTQI+ bill has been in the news since last week. If she had any integrity she would have pulled out.”

As of yet, Bonang has failed to address the controversy about her visit on social media or to even speak out against the inhuman legislation (perhaps the bare minimum she could do).

In 2016, Bonang faced similar criticism after she took part in the Uganda Entertainment Awards, leading her to release a statement affirming her support for “human rights of all kinds.”

The Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill, commonly known as the Anti-LGBTQ+ Bill, was passed by the Parliament of Ghana on 28th February 2024.

If signed into law by President Nana Akufo-Addo, the bill will jail people for up to three years simply for identifying as lesbian, gay, transgender, transsexual, queer, pansexual, non-binary, or as an ally.

It also further outlaws “related activities”, including same-sex intimacy, same-sex marriage, cross-dressing, and even the use of sex toys.

Anyone found guilty of the promotion and advocacy of LGBTQ+ “activities” in any medium faces up to 10 years in prison, as do landlords who rent their premises to an LGBTQ+ person.


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