Chief Imam demands answers from Peace Council

-On religious rights and tolerance in schools

The office of the Chief Imam is calling on the National Peace Council (NPC) to provide it with information regarding the exercise of religious rights and tolerance in public and private schools as well as workplaces.

According to a statement issued by the Chief Imam’s Office in Accra, the NPC was to provide feedback regarding religious rights and tolerance in public and private schools

It said a national stakeholders’ forum on religious tolerance and freedom in Ghana was held on March 31, 2015 and it was agreed that NPC would update the Chief Imam’s Office with information on religious rights and tolerance in public and private schools.

One year on, the statement said the NPC is yet to do so.

The statement said it has become a great source of worry and concern to the Muslim community in Ghana that some aspects of the communiqué issued after the meeting are yet to be addressed and implemented.

It indicated that even though a part of the communiqué indicted that “no public school shall require students who are followers of a different religion to participate in acts of worship, devotion or fellowship without their consent or that of their parents, our children continue to be subjected to all forms of religious injustice, discrimination and intolerance in many schools across the country.”

“While we do not wish to dwell on specific cases of worsening violations of the religious rights of Muslim students by authorities of some schools, we are extremely worried by the seeming lack of consideration of the terms of the communiqué towards ensuring religious tolerance in schools Ghana.”

The statement added that the NPC was also supposed to reconvene to complete the discussions on other issues of concern, such as the right of Muslim women in workplaces, but that has not been done a year on.

The Chief Imam’s office is, therefore, appealing to the NPC not to allow the goodwill that was generated at the talks to be swept away.

It is also calling on the NPC to provide information on a clear roadmap on the implementation of the terms of the communiqué.

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