Presidentâ€ˆJohn Evans Atta Mills,has inaugurated the National Peace Council (NPC) Board with a call on members to work without fear of intimidation in order to maintain and sustain the peace the country currently enjoys.
Let’s at all times maintain and sustain peace. Whether or not it is the government, the President, traditional leaders, or political leaders who are the obstacle, you have the right, under the law, to bring us to order,” the President said.
The 13-member board, under the chairmanship of Most Rev Prof Emmanuel Asante, Chairman of the Christian Council of Ghana, comprises Maulvi Dr Wahab Adam, the Ameer and Missionary-in-Charge of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Movement; Apostle Dr. Opoku Onyinah, President of the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council, Nana Susubribi Krobea Asante, Asokorehene; Most Rev. Dr. Joseph Osei-Bonsu, President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference; Sheikh Mahmoud Gedel and Alhaji Adam Abubakar, both of the Office of the Chief Imam.
The rest are Rev Gideon Titi-Ofei, the General Secretary of the National Association of Charismatic and Christian Churches; Nii Otokunor Sampah, an elder of the Afrikania Mission; Mr Shaibu Abubakr of the Ghana Network for Peace Building; Mr Mumuni Abudu Seidu, an educationist; Mrs Florence Mangwe Hutchful, a Human Resource consultant, and Rev. Dr. Nii Amoo Darku, an evangelist.
The President cautioned against the use of intemperate language and acts that were likely to disturb the peace, stressing that most conflicts were generated by people who wanted to achieve their personal parochial interests.
“Let us preserve the country how we came to meet it. If we can maintain stability, the best we can do is to maintain the peace,” he said.
Prof. Mills drew the mismatch between conflict and development, saying “all our handiworks and toil will be in vain without peace.”
“I am happy that the country has realised the need for peace. Some of us get up and make careless statements without being aware that one of such unguarded statements can bring violence and throw the whole country in a turmoil,” he said.
He expressed concern over pockets of conflicts across the sub-region and some parts of the country, adding that, “when I watch people carrying buckets and pillows to seek refuge, I say God forbid,” admonishing, however that nobody should take the peace being enjoyed in the country for granted.
Interior Minister, Dr. Benjamin Kunbuor, expressed optimism that major steps taken by Ghana in the peace-building framework would not be eroded.
He said the fact that the National Peace Council Law had been passed did not mean the end to efforts at ensuring peace, rather the situation must be used as a spring board to maintain peace in the country.
The United Nationsâ€ˆResident Coordinator in Ghana, Ms Ruby Sandhu-Rajon, lauded Ghana for its role in international peace-keeping missions, adding that “Ghana is serving as a model in Africa.”
The Chairman of the Board, Most Rev Prof Asante, on behalf his colleagues, thanked President Mills for giving them the opportunity to serve the country to ensure the peace and stability needed for development.