Certain utterances attributed to some of the priests who officiated at the church service held in memory of the three High Court judges and a military officer, who were callously murdered in 1982, can not pass without comment.
A report published in the Daily Graphic of 1st July 2004 quoted one of the priests as saying "May God continue to harass their conscience until they confess." He was also reported as having said "it was also unfortunate that certain people publicly defended the dastardly acts without any form of remorse, adding that their pronouncements, if not challenged have the potential to destroy the society." The Daily Graphic report continued that the said priest appealed to the two gates of Dagbon, to resolve their differences and recognise themselves as brothers from the same tribe and country in order for lasting peace to prevail in the Northern Region.
This is a priest who is preaching a sermon in memory of persons who were murdered and whose murderers were not only identified, but they were actually arrested prosecuted and convicted, but who obviously believes that Justice was not done to the murdered persons.
So strong is this belief of his that he actually prays God Almighty to harass those whom he suspects were involved in that heinous crime.
To the extent that there could be any such person or persons, we identify with the prayer of the priest, and if he had left it at that we may not have had any problem with his prayer.
However, that this priest reportedly went on to exhort the Abudus and Andanis to strife to live in harmony with one another, apparently totally ignoring the fact that to date not a single person has been held responsible for the carnage at Dagbon that resulted in the killing of the Overlord of Dagbon, Ya-Na Yakubu Andani II, and over forty of his kinsmen, makes us wonder if the pristine image of the high calling of Priesthood is not being debased on the altar of political opportunism by this man of the cloth.
It beats our imagination how a man who, perhaps out of his righteous indignation at the manner in which the judges and the military officer were callously murdered, notwithstanding the fact that the murderers were found and dealt with according to law twenty-two years ago, actually called on God to harass people who he suspects had a hand in the killing, could ignore the fact that the killers of the Ya-Na and his kinsmen have not yet been found, let alone brought to Justice.
What abject hypocrisy!!!
Why was he not calling on God to harass those who murdered the Ya-Na? Could it be that those persons are his political soul-mates?
Lest we are misunderstood, let it be known that we are not against the call on the Abudus and Andanis to strive to live in peace and harmony. Nor do we seek to question the right of this priest to choose what he wants to comment on and/or what not to comment on, but we do believe that for a man of his calling, taking a principled stance on issues is a sine qua non for the respect that his high calling demands, and if people must continue to give him, and others like him, that respect as a matter of course, then they owe it to themselves to be seen to be taking principled positions and not clearly partisan positions.
We plead with these men of the cloth that just as they are concerned that Justice is done to the murdered judges and the military officer, they should with equal zeal and passion champion the fight to get the Kufuor government to find, arrest, and prosecute those who murdered the Ya-Na and over forty other persons in broad-day light within sight and hearing of the security agencies in Yendi.
Their silence on this equally heinous and as yet unsolved murders, while screaming at the top of their voices expressing concern over murders for which the perpetrators were found and dealt with according law, suggests that in the view of these clergy, and here we dare add such civil society groups as the Ghana Bar Association, appear to us to hold the view that "while all citizens are equal, some are more equal than others."
It is clear to all dispassionate observers of the Ghanaian political landscape that there is a deliberate campaign of misinformation which is being implemented through repeating of vicious lies, apparently in the hope that merely by repeating those lies over and over again they would take on an appearance of truth.
Insha Allah, they would never succeed. A Lie is a Lie. While a Lie may take on an appearance of Truth for sometime, Truth ultimately will out.
Our last word: Self delusion is an individual's prerogative. They can continue deluding themselves that they are doing damage to the image and standing of certain persons and political parties, but we wish to draw their attention to the Akan adage that says "wotu edro bonea, kakra beka wanu."