President Nana Akufo-Addo in a recent statement has indicated that the call for churches to be taxed is not out of place looking at how far some churches in Ghana may have veered off their core mandates.
Dishing out seeming stinging criticisms at the Christian community, the president said the church had become a pale shadow of what it used to be some years back.
“These are interesting times for all of us in our country, as we grapple with the task of building a happy and prosperous nation. It could not be lost on anyone that there are increasing calls for churches to be taxed. It is not difficult to see what is driving these calls,” he said at the opening of the 2018 Synod of the Global Evangelical Church in Accra.
According to him, if a section of the public is calling for churches to be taxed, it is because churches had stepped out of their charity sphere and rather ‘milking’ poor members who barely have enough to fend for themselves.
“When you step out of the charity sphere, out of education and out of healthcare, you are putting yourself in the line of the taxman,” he stressed.
The President continued: “The public looks on as priests compete to show who is the more powerful and who is the richer. The public looks on as some of the churches appear to forget about the poor and the vulnerable in our society, and concentrate on being outrageous.”
Go Back To Good
Obviously wondering what may have gone wrong with ‘today’s church, the president said, “For years, the churches were seen as leading the drive for development; they built and ran schools and hospitals, they led the campaign for good sanitation, cleanliness was next to godliness, they preached and practiced.”
He therefore made a clarion call on the church and religious bodies in general to partner with government to improve the conditions of the people for a better tomorrow.
Nana-Addo further called on religious leaders to shun messages that suggest people need miracles to survive.
“If the Church would have the people believe that our survival and prosperity depend on miracles, those of us in government have an impossible task.
“Education and hard work have been shown to be the surest path to success for both individuals and nation” he advised.
By Grace Ablewor Sogbey