Mills urges religious leaders to promote decency in the society


    President John Evans Atta Mills has urged religious leaders to teach their adherents that decency and decorum in discourse was a requirement for order, stability and peaceful co-existence.
    He made the call in an address read on his behalf at the opening session of the 79th National Annual Convention of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Mission, Ghana (AMMG), in Accra on Thursday.
    The three-day convention is under the theme: “Promoting Tolerance and Peaceful Co-existence: The Role of Religion.”
    President Mills observed that Ghana had become an undisputed oasis of peace and stability in the sub-region stressing that self-discipline and a return to the basic values of self respect were critical for the sustenance of the peace.
    On religious intolerance, he said, “Ghana has been spared the destructive and harrowing experiences of inter-religious violence. This is largely due to the responsible leadership being exercised by the leadership of religious bodies in the country.”
    President Mills said “it is instructive that all religious bodies should continue to commit themselves to peace and refuse to allow their members to be mobilised along religious lines by unscrupulous people to achieve their mercenary goals at the expense of the national interest.”
    He decried many violent, conflicts and cycle of revenge in areas often inhabited by people of diverse religions, adding that feelings of religious or tribal superiority on the part of a religious group or tribe accounted for the discord.
    President Mills called on the delegates to practice tolerance at home to promote stability, order and peaceful co-existence on the national scale.
    National Chief Imam, Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharabutu, said Allah created humankind from a parent and stressed that both Muslims and non-Muslims needed to live together as a family.
    He called for divine wisdom to guide the Presidency and its administration to make judicious use of the oil revenue to augment the country’s socio-economic development.
    Dr Maulvi Wahab Adam, Head and Missionary in-charge of AMMG, lauded the contributions that successive Ghanaian political leaders had made to stabilise and consolidate the country’s fragile democratic process.
    “But for this patriotic trait of our political leaders, Ghana would not have been spared the political turmoil that we witness in other countries,” he said.
    Dr Adam reiterated the call for a joint meeting of Christian and Muslim leaders to reassure their adherents that religion must not be used as a tool to divide people.
    “…religion is used not to generate conflict but to foster peace and harmony…, religion is used not for disrespect of what others hold dear and acrimony, but for mutual respect and active cooperation.”
    Mr Issifu Ali, Member of the Mission, expressed regret that religion had been used by some individuals as a divisive tool citing events of September 11, 2001 in the United States of America, conflicts in Kosovo and Bosnia Herzegovina and violence clashes between Iraqis and Pakistanis.
    He said the theme for the convention was appropriate to remind all and sundry to promote tolerance and peaceful co-existence.
    AAMG is a missionary organisation established in 1889 to disseminate the true teachings and beauties of Islam as practiced by the Holy Founder of Islam.
    The Mission stands for the true Islam that is peace with one’s self, one’s creator and fellow human beings, as well as peace with the environment and submission to the will of God.
    Since its establishment it has inculcated in the hearts of men and women, a firm believe in the existence of the living God, who communicates with His righteous servants as He did in the past and to bring all people of the world together into one common brotherhood.