The Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference has strongly criticized politicians who attempt to introduce religious passion into the nation’s political activities ahead of the forthcoming election.
In a communiqué issued at the end of its annual plenary assembly held in Sunyani in the Bono Region of Ghana on November 18, 2023, the Conference expressed growing concerns over this detrimental trend.
As a secular state, Ghana recognizes the right of all individuals to practice any religion and to freely form or belong to any political party of their choice, regardless of their religious affiliation.
The Catholic Bishops’ Conference emphasized the importance of respecting these constitutional provisions. They called on all Ghanaians to prioritize national interests in their political campaigns to preserve the peace and unity of the country.
The communiqué, jointly issued by Most Reverend Philip Naameh, President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference and Bishop of Tamale, Most Reverend Gabriel Charles Palmer-Buckle, Archbishop of Cape Coast, and Most Reverend John Bonaventure Kwofie, Bishop of Accra, warned against the dangers of engaging in a “politics of religion”. The bishops stressed that such actions undermine the harmony of Ghana’s diverse religious and cultural landscape.
The Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference appealed to all citizens to uphold and promote peace as the nation approaches the 2024 general election.
They urged the electorate to vote wisely and responsibly, considering the growth and development of the nation. The conference highlighted the pressing need for unity and a collective focus on Ghana’s progress in these crucial times.
The Catholic Bishops’ Conference remains committed to fostering an environment where religious tolerance and respect for diversity prevail.
They called on all Ghanaians, regardless of their religious or political affiliations, to embrace the values of peace, love, and unity, principles that underpin the prosperity of the nation.
As the election season approaches, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference hopes that their message resonates with politicians and citizens alike.
Their plea for the removal of religious bigotry from the political narrative seeks to safeguard the democratic process, ensuring that Ghana’s future remains bright and inclusive.
By Vincent Kubi