In Ghana, prostitution is a criminal act which attracts a fine or misdemeanor or both. The Criminal Code, 1960 (Act 29) defines prostitution to ‘(include) the offering by a person of his body commonly for acts of lewdness (sex) payment although there is no act of ordinary sexual connection.’
Per Ghana’s legal frame work on prostitution, there is a reinforcement of an age-old culture of blaming victims of prostitution for their exploitation. Deducing from this, criminalization portrays prostitution as a victimless crime, committed by immoral sexual deviant. This school of thought is further entrenching cultural norms silent on “pimping” while denigrating and encouraging violence against women with “whore’ language and attitude. The Police are also required to respect, maintain and protect human rights and human dignity of all persons, and are supposed to act impartially and in accordance with the law. Therefore, the rights of victims of prostitution should be respected and protected.
A country that is committed to the advancement of the welfare of the majority would not economically institutionalize the sexual subordination of women to men. The paper recommends Ghana’s adoption of the Nordic model due to its consistency with our institutional direction on social policy.