The US Department of State has released its annual report on human rights practices for 2022, and Ghana has been mentioned for multiple human rights violations.
The report, released in April 2023, highlighted a range of abuses including arbitrary or unlawful killings, extrajudicial killings, and torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment carried out by the government or on its behalf.
The report noted that police impunity was due to corruption, brutality, inadequate training, lack of oversight, and an overloaded judicial system. It revealed that police often failed to respond to crime reports and demanded payment for transport and other operational expenses from the public before taking action.
Additionally, the report detailed the arrest of Oliver Barker-Vormawor, an activist critical of the government, by police on February 11. Barker-Vormawor was initially charged with misdemeanours for making false statements on Facebook, but the charges were later upgraded to felony treason. He spent 35 days in jail before being granted bail by a judge.
According to the report, there are severe limitations on free expression and media, including violence and threats of violence against journalists, unjustified arrests or prosecutions of journalists, substantial interference with the freedom of peaceful assembly, and government corruption.
The report also highlighted the lack of investigation and accountability for gender-based violence, including domestic or intimate partner violence, and crimes targeting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or intersex individuals or persons with disabilities. Additionally, laws criminalizing consensual same-sex sexual conduct between adults, although not fully enforced, were also noted.
The government was found to have taken some measures to address corruption and human rights abuses by officials, including those in the security forces or elsewhere in the government, but impunity remained an ongoing issue.