The founder and leader of the International Central Gospel Church [ICGC], Pastor Mensa Otabil, believes that US President, Donald Trump’s description of African countries as ‘shithole’, may not be uncharacteristic of the continent’s problems.
According to him, the description, although unsavory and uncomplimentary, is enforced by the challenges the continent faces.
In a sermon on Sunday to mark the church’s 34th anniversary, Pastor Mensa Otabil suggested that Africa had a development challenge that requires a deeper reflection to rise above the current challenges.
US President Donald Trump earlier this year reportedly described countries such as Haiti, El Salvador and African countries as shitholes, generating global uproar especially among blacks who criticized Mr. Trump for being racist.
But Pastor Mensa Otabil in his sermon said, “If God has called us to reach African people then we have to find out what is the problem with African people. And the problems are quite self-evident. We are the poorest in the world. Just look around us. We have been described very unsavoury not too long ago by the president of a prominent nation, in terms that are very uncomplimentary. And as annoying as that description is, it is not prescriptive but it is descriptive. It doesn’t tell you that is where we are going, but it seems we exhibit symptoms that conform to that description. ”
He told the congregation at the ICGC Christ Temple, Abossey Okai in Accra, that he had identified inferiority complex as a major issue impeding the development of Africa and blacks as a race.
While citing the continent’s seemingly over-dependence on foreign assistance in terms of human and monetary resources and logistics, the revered spiritual leader lamented that the current situation depicts blacks as “a broken people.”
“I feel that one of the biggest challenges that we face as people is a sense of inferiority. It is almost as if you can’t do anything about your problems. We almost feel incapacitated before our problems. We feel as if somebody from somewhere should help us all the time. We are like a broken people, we either need the British to help us, or the Germans to help us or the Americans to help us, and now we even want the Chinese to help us, Indians to help us,” he said.
‘Why should we feel helpless?’
Dr. Mensa Otabil further stressed on the apparent state of helplessness of most Ghanaians in the country over the level of development and happenings in the country, indicating that the phenomenon of feeling or being helpless as a Ghanaian in Ghana must not be entertained.
“I don’t have problems with Chinese or Indians, but why should we feel helpless in our country? I don’t mind feeling helpless if I go to Germany because, I’m not a German. But I shouldn’t feel helpless in Ghana. If I go to Germany and I feel inferior, that is normal, it is okay, but I shouldn’t feel that way when I’m here in my own country.”
“And that problem is not really a political problem. We felt that way before we became politicians so when you become a politician, you just go and manifest what you were already feeling. The sense of the inferiority is one of the things that I think God must help us to break,” he noted.