Idris Elba, Naomi Campbell and Michaela Coel have signed an open letter in support of Ghana’s LGBT community.
The letter calls on Nana Akufo-Addo, the country’s president, to “reach out and engage in a meaningful and purposeful dialogue” with the Ghanaian LGBT community.
In addition to actor Elba, supermodel Campbell and writer Coel, British Vogue editor-in-chief Edward Enninful and broadcaster Reggie Yates have also signed the letter.
Actor Paapa Essiedu, radio DJ Clara Amfo, architect Sir David Adjaye and model Adwoa Aboah also signed the letter.
The letter says: “To our Ghanaian LGBTQIA+ family: We see you and we hear you. We are in awe of your strength, your bravery and your audacity to be true to who you are even when it is dangerous to do so.
“You are loved, you are important and you deserve a safe place to gather in your shared experience.”
An LGBT centre in Accra, the capital of Ghana, reportedly closed last month following a police raid and protests about its work.
“In recent weeks we have watched with profound concern as you have had to question the safety of your vital work at the ‘LGBT+ Rights Ghana’ centre in Accra, and feared for your personal wellbeing and security,” the letter says.
“It is unacceptable to us that you feel unsafe. Even though at present you might be feeling alone and concerned, we want to assure you that we are here.”
It adds: “As prominent and powerful advocates for this great country, we are beseeching his excellency, the president of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo and political/cultural leaders to reach out and engage in a meaningful and purposeful dialogue with the LGBTQIA+ community leaders to create a pathway for allyship, protection and support.
“We petition for inclusivity which will make the nation even greater and even stronger.”