Policy think tank Strategic Thinkers Network (STRANEK) has warned the flag bearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to stop making comments that border on “religious bigotry”.
According to STRANEK, a recent comment by Mr Akufo-Addo that he chose his running mate Dr Mahamadu Bawumia, who is a Muslim, because he loves people of the Islamic faith and also believed in the abilities of the former second Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, amounted to religious bigotry.
The three-time presidential candidate recently explained that his choice of Dr Bawumia, since 2008, was based on the fact that “with Christianity and Islam being the two dominant religions in Ghana, unity amongst these two religions will help boost the country’s development”, adding: “The Muslim I chose is not just a Muslim, but a very brilliant Muslim who can help develop the nation with his in-depth knowledge.”
But STRANEK in a statement co-signed by Nii Tettey Tetteh and Charles Kwadade, both Executive Directors, said: “His running mate, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, set the pace by engaging in religious bigotry a couple of months ago. He was condemned, named and shamed. The flag bearer has now followed suit.”
“What does the flag bearer of NPP mean by he chose Dr Bawumia because he loves Muslims? Such comments are reckless and [sow] seeds of religious bigotry. At this crucial point, we advise the NPP to disembark [from] religious bigotry. The NPP and other political parties must not make [bigoted] comments as the country decides on December 7, 2016.
“It is actually unwarranted to make statements which will have an iota of religious bigotry. No chance should be taken to breed some level of tension among religious sects. Every single religion in Ghana is integral, hence the ‘crazy’ love ought to cut across to bring peace and unity. Surely, peace and love will continue to further this country now and forever more. We are all involved in building our motherland Ghana.”