Guard Religious Tolerance Jealously… Akufo-Addo Tells Ghanaians
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has emphasized the need for Ghanaians to guard with vigilance and diligence, the religious open-mindedness that the country currently enjoys.
According to him, Ghana stands out in terms of inter and intra religious co-operation and such blessings must not be taken for granted.
“Ghana is home to persons of virtually every religious denomination. They all go about their religious practices without hindrance. We ought to guard this tradition of religious co-operation and tolerance jealously,” Akufo-Addo said.
He made this call at the Celebrations of Eid-Ul-Fitr held at the Black Star Square, in Accra, last Friday.
Nana Addo recalled how an official inter-faith service was successfully organized to commemorate Ghana’s 25 years of democracy adding that, Christian, Muslim and Traditional religious leaders came together to conduct that service.
For the president, “Such arrangements are rare in many countries around the world, and we ought to be proud of ourselves for being capable of doing such things. Even so, we must not be complacent.”
It is no news; the varying religious clashes spread across the globe― most leading to religious insurgencies and avoidable loss of lives.
Nana Addo therefore pledged an allegiance to bring to book persons who may try to instigate enmity amongst the people.
“The security agencies will not hesitate to deal with those who incite hate, not even if they do so in the name of Islam or Christianity,” the president stressed.
Akufo-Addo further reiterated government’s commitment to the welfare of the Muslim community in Ghana.
According to him, the Zongo Development Fund (ZDF) to cater for the development needs of the Zongo communities has been setup and with an efficient board ready to work assiduously.
“Development projects have started in many Zongo communities around the country. In Asawase, in Kumasi, for example, we have started the process of desilting the Pelele River that runs through the community. We are also building major drains in the community to stop the perennial flooding that occurs in the area, and cuts it off from the rest of Kumasi during the rainy season,” the president noted.
The president also hopes to develop the talents of young men and women in the Zongos with an initiative tagged the ‘Astro Turfs’. This according to him would create a conducive environment for the training and development of sporting talents.
Nana Addo further highlighted the need for Muslim communities to embrace the education of the girl child while it abolishes completely the menace of early child marriage.
The celebration which comes after a one month period of intense devotion to God through fasting and prayers, brought together thousands of worshippers.
The National Chief Imam, Sheikh Dr Osman Nuhu Sharabutu told worshippers at the event to love one another and be law abiding.
“Fellow Muslims, we can only contribute to the consolidation of democracy and good governance in our nation by simply abiding by the teachings of slam and upholding the principles and tenets of our religion,” he said.
The Imam said prayers for the presidency and for the preservation of the country at large.
By: Grace Ablewor Sogbey & Pamela A. Allotey (Intern)