Home / Will Muslims, traditionalists use cathedral, too? – Gyampo

Will Muslims, traditionalists use cathedral, too? – Gyampo

A Professor at the University of Ghana, Ransford Gyampo, has added his voice to the ongoing debate over the construction of a National Cathedral, saying President Nana Akufo-Addo means well with the project.

He, however, wondered, in a Facebook post on Tuesday, 28 August 2018, whether cathedrals would be built for other faiths “given that Ghana is a secular state”. “Will Muslims and traditionalists be allowed to use the national cathedral as worship grounds, too?”

President Akufo-Addo, on Tuesday, 6 March 2018 unveiled the design and architecture of the national Cathedral at a brief ceremony at the Accra International Conference Centre.

It would house impressive chapels and baptistery, a 5,000-capacity auditorium, grand central hall, music school, choir rehearsal and multi-use spaces, an art gallery and a shop.

The President said the edifice was going to be an iconic centre for thanksgiving and to worship God for His mercies. He called for all to find space to support the construction of the project.

Making that a reality, however, requires the pulling down of some state institutions including bungalows, some of which were built five years ago. Some judges are being relocated to pave way for the demolition of their bungalows for the project to start.

This development has attracted mixed feelings among the Ghanaian public. For instance, Cultural Anthropologist Osofo Kofitse-Ahadzi, has said, the construction of the Cathedral is a useless exercise and waste of resources.

In his view, the project is a diversionary tactic being employed by the government to sway attention from its incompetence.

“I feel sad that this government is jumping from one controversy to the other. What is the use of the cathedral? What have we not seen in this country with the work in those so-called cathedrals? This is a useless exercise and a diversionary exercise.

“Who told them that God resides in a cathedral? After all, don’t they do evil in those cathedrals? In their churches what don’t we see them do? Those so-called men of God are men of their own gods, they go in for devilish energies to bamboozle the people.

“This is the height of confusion, incompetence, inability to govern and you must go because you can’t govern. Why do you have to be wasting our ears?” He said on Ghana Yensom on Accra 100.5FM hosted by Chief Jerry Forson on Monday, 27 August 2018.

But Prof Gyampo, in his comment, said: “I think the President meant well in his proposal to build a national cathedral for Ghana. A genuine heart of gratitude to God by the President must be applauded by all. But I have a few questions:

1. Given that Ghana is a secular state, will we construct same cathedrals for the other faiths?

2. Will muslims and traditionalists be allowed to use the national cathedral as worship grounds too?

3. Who pays for the cost of the land? Who pays for the temporary accommodation of the judges? Who pays for the new residences that may be built for the judges? Who pays for the resettlement of all other house property owners around the areas to be affected by the demolition exercise? Are these payments going to be part of the mandate of the board of trustees or the state?

4. Does it please God that we put together a competent board of trustees who have the pedigree to raise funds to build a national cathedral in a country saddled with imponderable developmental challenges?

5. Are there not enough cathedrals and grounds for thanksgiving?

6. Can the mandate of the board of trustees be amended slightly to make them raise funds to finance the free SHS and provide certain critical interventions at our various hospitals where people are dying because of lack of basic health facilities?

As a Christian, the talk of a national cathedral makes me sober. But at the same time, there is no better thanksgiving to God than putting together a board of trustees whose mandate would include helping to bring investors to generate employment for the teaming youth, providing enough facilities and equipment to make the treatment of terminal diseases at our hospitals affordable, improving quality and teaching infrastructure at all levels of education, etc.

The idea of building a cathedral for the nation as a sign of thanksgiving and gratitude to God is good. But it should remain an idea for now while the President focuses on his key signature projects.

May God bless the President for originating the thought.

Source: Ghana/ClassFMonline.com

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