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Prostitution in Ghana is illegal but widespread,   so much so that many Ghanaians are unaware that it is prohibited. Some prostitutes in Ghana are campaigning for the sex trade to be legalised,   and discussions have taken place. Prostitutes in Ghana are known locally as "ashawo",  "toutou" derived from 'two shillings, two pence'; a prostitute who doesn't charge much  or "maame-i-dey". Often these are in makeshift shacks or old warehouses, and some are attached to bars. Generally they are older women or widows.
Roamers tend to be younger women and work on the streets, bars and hotels. They usually get a fee from both parties. The women face occasional violence from the customers, or more commonly refusal to pay. Hotel staff may exploit them. Since oil production started in , prostitution in the port of Takoradi has risen sharply due to the influx of oil workers.
The prevalence of male prostitution in Ghana has slowly risen over the years but not much is said about it because of the form it takes. Male prostitutes go undercover as women because homosexuality is illegal in Ghana as per the constitution. Law enforcement is variable, and there are also occasional crack-downs on prostitutes. These included intimidation, extortion, threats and raids. Many reported that they had had to have sex with the officers to avoid prosecution.
Police and politicians are sometimes bribed or blackmailed to turn a blind eye. Ghana has established itself as a destination for sex tourism from western tourists. This kind of tourism has attracted paedophiles due to the country's lax child protection laws and poor law enforcement. Vietnamese prostitutes have been found in Ghana  in the coastal cities of Tema and Takoradi. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. See also: Human trafficking in Ghana.
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