Ghana Charismatic Bishops’ Conference has described as “arbitrary” and “discriminatory”, the government’s four-week ban placed on churches and places of worship.
According to the Christian body, the decision was taken and announced without an input from their members which it says, “smacks of a disregard of the importance of the church’s role in the country.”
President Akufo-Addo in a televised address Sunday, announced wide-reaching decisions to curb the coronavirus incidence. The decisions include banning public gatherings and closure of schools and universities.
While commending the government for responding swiftly to the public’s need for leadership and direction, the Ghana Charismatic Bishops Conference, however, criticised the decision which it said missed other centres of intense social interaction.
In a statement, its General Secretary, Rev. Kwasi Deh, want the government to also shutdown night clubs, restaurants, shopping malls, busy offices, banks, drinking spots, chop bars, lorry stations and markets.
“We find it unfortunate that important church groupings such as the Ghana Charismatic Bishops’ Conference, National Association of Charismatic & Christian Churches, and Ghana Pentecostal Council have not been engaged in the making of this announcement. The arbitrary closure of churches and places of worship without consultation or discussion for 4 weeks, smacks of a disregard of the importance of the church’s role in the country. This disregard of the place of this powerful social and religious institution, to which over 70% of Ghanaians belong, is wrong,” the Conference indicated.
If further questioned: “Churches own and run a significant part of the health infrastructure and hospitals in the nation. As the announcement has gone forth to close down activities of these churches, shall we assume that the health facilities which these churches run are also to close down?”
The Ghana Charismatic Bishops’ Conference is, therefore, calling on the government to act without fear or favor, by shutting down all social interaction centres “and not to discriminate by closing down churches, schools and institutions which they deem frivolous or dispensable in the society.”
The Ghana Charismatic Bishops’ Conference is a powerful body made up of Bishops of several different charismatic denominations in Ghana. Its membership currently is made of over 100 bishops located in all the 16 regions of the country.
Read the full statement below: