General News of Sunday, 8 March 2015
President John Dramani Mahama has asked Ghanaians to wait patiently for the Supreme Court to give its verdict on the current religious impasse involving the Muslim Community and heads of Mission schools.
Speaking at the 58th Independence Day Anniversary Parade on Thursday, the President said all Ghanaians should wait for the highest court of the land to discharge its mandate.
He however added that the government is not averse to the use of inter-faith channels and dialogue to resolve any disagreements amongst different faith groups.
The President, however, revealed that he had directed the National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) to join the National Peace Council in initiating a dialogue to foster an amicable understanding of how to operationalize Article 21 (1) of our constitution adding , “this is without prejudice to any conclusion the Supreme Court of the Land would arrive at in respect of the suit brought before it.”
The Supreme Court is set to hear a landmark case requesting for a perpetual injunction restraining anybody or institution from condoning or forcing students of other faiths to participate in sectional religious activities.
The plaintiff, Nii Lamptey is seeking interpretation of 5 articles in the Constitution that seeks to define Ghana as a secular country with no state of an official religion. The suit is requesting for 13 reliefs.
“A declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of the letter and spirit of the Constitution particularly articles 17,21(1)(b)(c),35(1),(5),(6)(a),37(1) and/or 5 of the Constitution, it is unreasonable, illegitimate and/or unlawful for students attending missions schools falling under the aegis of the Ghana Education Service and the Ministry of Education to be compelled under the guise of promoting school discipline to participate in religious activities endorsed and promoted by these mission schools when such students do not share the faiths proclaimed or promoted by these mission schools,” one of the reliefs read.
Nii Lamptey also wants more state resources to be devoted to minority religious schools as Christian mission schools receive from the government.