Maverick Nigerian man of God, Temitope Balogun (TB) Joshua is predicting harsher economic conditions for Ghana and has asked for concerted prayers for the country.
The founder of the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) predicted doom for Ghana’s economy, as the Cedi continues to take a nose-dive against the major trading currencies, particularly the United States Dollar.
The Ghanaian economy is in disarray with running inflation and tumbling currency.
As at Saturday evening, the Cedi was trading at GH¢2.92 on the black market, gradually inching toward the GH¢3 mark.
Rev Isaac Owusu Bempah
Another man of God, Rev Isaac Owusu Bempah of the Glorious Word Power Ministry International, warned of imminent coup in the face of the economic challenges if prayers are not said to avert it.
The Bank of Ghana (BoG) announced last week measures including setting limits on foreign-exchange transactions, ordering that sales and purchases be done in the local currency, in a bid to stem the Cedi’s free-fall. But the move has been criticized as unrealistic by economic experts.
The measure has rather exacerbated the financial crisis, sending the Cedi to the slaughter’s slab.
The Cedi, according to financial analysis and news provider Bloomberg, fell 1.2 percent, the lowest since at least May 1994.
The currency slumped 23 percent in the past year, making it Africa’s worst performing currency after the South African Rand.
Call for prayers
Prophet T.B. Joshua, reportedly told his congregation at yesterday’s Sunday service programme, beamed live on his Emmanuel TV channel, that Ghana’s economic situation might worsen even though his colleague man of God, Archbishop Nicholas Duncan-Williams of Christian Action Faith Ministry said the falling Cedi had been arrested.
Prophet Joshua then urged Christians, especially those in Ghana, to pray for the local currency.
The Founder of the Christian Action Faith in Ghana, Archbishop Duncan-Williams, only days ago, lifted up a Cedi note and prayed that God would give the President and managers of the economy new ideas to run the country.
But it appears that the situation is getting out of hand, with economists saying that the measures put in place by the Finance Minister, Seth Terkper and the Bank of Ghana, are only a panic response to the fast declining economy.
In spite of Ghana’s laws on causing fear and panic, controversial Ghanaian pastor Rev. Isaac Owusu-Bempah said he had seen through a vision that a military coup d’Ã©tat was in the offing for the country this year.
Rev. Owusu-Bempah said the coup would be a bloody one aimed at overthrowing the government and might be averted only through fervent prayers.
“Many other prophets in Ghana have seen this vision in the realms of the spirit, but I don’t know why they ain’t talking so we pray against it. Maybe they are scared of what the public would say. I know people would insult and criticise me for saying this but I don’t mind because I am a servant of God and my God has shown me a vision and asked me to tell it to the nation,” Owusu-Bempah told DAILY GUIDE at his church on Sunday.
The man of God also gave a warning to the supposed coup plotters to abandon their plan or suffer for it.
He called on his colleague men of God to unite in prayer for the security of Ghana.
“Instead of coming together as servants of God to do God’s work and intercede for our country, we allow ourselves to get divided and tagged with various political parties. Me, I don’t mind the tags on me. I would keep saying the things God shows me concerning our nation, Ghana, because I don’t speak for any political party. I say what God shows to me and asks me to say,” he added.
Feeling the heat
The directive by the BoG against issuing dollar cheques appears to be having an impact on some churches.
According to Accra-based Radio XYZ, Archbishop Duncan-Williams’ church yesterday, for instance, asked its congregation to stop issuing dollar cheques as offertories, tithes and other payments.
Senior executive pastor of the Prayer Cathedral, Bishop Ebenezer Obodai, is reported to have announced to the congregation that such cheques are likely not to be honoured by the banks and subsequently urged the members to issue only Cedi cheques.
Kweku Baako’s beef
In a related development, Editor in Chief of the New Crusading Guide, Abdul Malik Kweku Baako Jnr. on Newsfile, Joy FM‘s current affairs programme, said the country has been thrown into what he called a ‘state of complete despondency” and that government must be held ‘completely responsible’.
‘Times are rough; times are hard; times are tough,” he said and added that ‘it is unfortunate that it is the citizenry that has to suffer for the gross incompetence by the managers of the economy.’
He said government appears to be reintroducing a control and command economy and that is destined to fail and added that with this attempt to control people’s currency decisions, all that the government is doing, albeit indirectly, is to push people into the black market.
‘Money is a coward; if you do things that frighten money, it will run away,’ he said.
Minister of Information, Mahama Ayariga, who was on the programme with Mr. Baako, would not agree that the country’s economic problems could be attributed to incompetence on the part of the managers.
He said rather, in a current economic situation where the production of cocoa and gold receipts had all tumbled, some of the current challenges were to be expected and insisted that the global forces had negatively affected the economy.
In spite of the challenges, the minister said nobody could deny the fact that the economy is growing consistently at between 7 and 8 percent.
Just last week, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) blamed the managers of the economy for the current mess, calling it incompetent.
The Minority Spokesperson on Finance, Dr Anthony Akoto Osei, expressed disappointment with measures taken by the Bank of Ghana to arrest the continued depreciation of the Cedi.
The Old Tafo Member of Parliament said the measures were “knee-jerk” and would rather compel people who hitherto saved at the bank to withdraw their monies.
Speaking to Joy News, Dr Akoto Osei said if the managers of the country’s economy had been guided by the lessons of history, they would have taken better options other than seeking to control the market.
According to him, only 20 percent of the country’s population was in the formal sector and transacting business with the banks and other financial institutions.
The new measures, he warned, would rather take the few people away from the banks because people would not be dictated to as to how they have to use their own monies.
Instead of controlling people on how much money they could withdraw in dollars, as clearly spelt out in the new Bank of Ghana measures, Dr Osei said the officials of the Bank of Ghana should rather provide incentives for people from whom they wanted to buy the dollars.
He however applauded the government for raising the policy rate; a move which would make the Cedi more attractive.
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