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02.10.2005 Regional News

Alhaji Aliu Mahama lauds Lebanese community for being selflessness

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Accra, Oct. 2, GNA - Vice President Alhaji Aliu Mahama at the weekend, commended Muslims, who practise Zakat, the pillar of Islam, which enjoins them to give part of their income either to charity or to the poor.

Narrowing his commendation to the Lebanese community in Ghana, he said their commitment to the religious duty had helped raise the standards of the Muslim society, which he said remained the most deprived in the country.

The Vice President was speaking at the fourth triennial fund raising dinner of the Ghana Society For Islamic Education And Reformation, comprising mainly Lebanese, to raise money towards the proposed Al Rayaan International School complex in Accra, estimated at 1.5 million dollars.

He said Zakat had religious, spiritual, material and sociological significance, adding that, supporting the poor and the needy in society, was in line with the teachings of the founder of Islam, Prophet Mohammed.

Alhaji Mahama acclaimed the commitment of members of the Society in promoting Islamic and secular education. He said the cost of the project may sound too ambitious, but was quick to add that, "looking at your determined faces, I know you can make it".

Alhaji Mahama asked the Society not to limit the provision of educational facilities to Accra only.

They must also invite investors from Lebanon to take advantage of the friendly and stable economic environment in Ghana. Last year, the Society raised 1.2 billion cedis towards the project and hoped to net 1.8 million cedis this year. Mr Safwan Al Waly, President of the Society said it was formed in 1985 by a group of Lebanese and some philanthropists. Since its inception, the Society had established a number of schools, which include Ghana- Lebanon Junior and Senior Secondary School, a primary school and a diploma awarding Islamic school that attracts students from the West African Sub-Region.

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