As one sage once said, “Sex is the greatest force in material life.” Of course it is – as many will go any extent to engage in it, read on it, view it, download it, listen about it, and share it with others.
For education purpose, it should be noted that in Ghana, downloading, sharing, or possessing nude materials, is a criminal offence and our Criminal Offences Act lour it. The law states below:
“A person who publishes or offer for sale an obscene book, writing, or representation commits a misdemeanor”- section 280 of Criminal Offences Act, 1960.(Act 29) Section 281 (1) of Act 29 also states that “A person commits a misdemeanor (a) for the purpose of or by way of trade, or for the purpose of distribution or public exhibition , makes , produces, or has in his possession any one or more obscene writing, drawings, prints , paintings, printed matter, picture, emblem , photographs, cinematography films or other obscene objects.
The criminal code of Ghana also debars anyone from publishing or offering for sale, any material that has the tendency to deprave societal morals. Any publication that is unnecessarily and improperly calculated to excite passions or corrupt those whose minds are open to such immoral influences can be held for promoting obscenity.
Obscenity also involves having in your possession, putting into circulation or publicly exhibiting obscene drawings, prints, posters, photography or any other related obscene objects. This means that downloading indecent materials and images from the internet as is often done, also amounts to a criminal offence, even though there are no plans to publish or circulate the obscene objects.
Why downloading a nude or obscene material is considered a crime, the Act explains, “This is because downloading constitutes a pseudo-photograph (would-be). Moreover, downloading in effect is making a new copy of the original material. Also, possessing a material of obscene nature amounts to a criminal offence, whether or not there’s an intent to circulate it.”
You and I, have on some occasions, downloaded and shared leaked videos or pictures of others, especially those of celebrities and popular figures on Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp – so we all stand accused in this regard. This law will catch up on us one day.