While I understand religious freedom, freedom of conscience, thought, belief and association under various human rights instruments and the constitution of Ghana, I have always been distrustful of Ghanaian based churches. They are neither accountable to citizens or to the laws of Ghana.
In my opinion, Ghanaian churches are such a part of our political and social woes. They are like dentists or pharma companies; they create the problem that could not have been there in the 1st place and pretend they have solutions.
I see most Ghanaian churches as corrupt institutions that also use religion as an excuse to abuse and exploit members, families and communities. In fact, recently I have come to believe that many are terrorizing our communities.
Most have also been in bed with corrupt individuals, politicians and the wealthy. They have gained wealth and power at the expense of vulnerable individuals, capitalize on poverty etc …and have become dominant and abusive of our society, culture and political systems.
Churches and religious people flout all kinds of laws without any repercussions because of Christian bias in the Ghanaian society. Some rape, murder, evade taxes, discriminate and violate human rights without any reprimand. No where else except on an African soil will such impunity be condoned.
In the meantime, only a few have the guts to call them on their corrupt and abusive acts for fear of reprisal or their threats of invoking a certain spirit.
The massive abuse of religious freedom, human rights violations and the crimes being committed by religious institutions and individuals would not be condoned or tolerated anywhere else outside of Africa. These people flout all kinds of laws without accountability. Why?
Quite pathetic and shameful and also dangerous for social and economic harmony.
Ghanaians and Africans have to learn from history and some of the atrocities associated with religious groups and practices.
Churches have to be restricted and constrained, as permitted by law, from terrorizing infirmed individuals, elderly people, the poor and our communities before they cause more harm. The constitution makes enough provisions under Article 12(2) for such restrictions, and in accordance. Conditions under which such limitations could occur are specified in major international human rights instruments including the ICCPR (see Article 11(3). These powers to restrict religious freedom were upheld by former Supreme Court Justice SK Date-Bah report.
They are disrupting public order, safety, peace, health and breaching various Ghanaian civil and criminal laws, and violating the rights of others, which are all grounds for restricting religious expression and practices.
They are breaking families, communities, exploiting the vulnerable and disturbing public peace and security and must be stopped.
Other countries have not allowed such abuses; Ghana ought to step up.
July 27, 2019