Kyebi (E/R) Oct. 9, GNA - Sermonising Vice President Alhaji Aliu Mahama, who quoted extensively from the Bible, on Sunday asked Ghanaians to thank God for the numerous blessings the country was enjoying, including peace and stability. "There are some people, who say Ghanaians are suffering; but I know that even if we are suffering, we are doing so in peace and liberty," he said.
"Whereas our Sub-Region is engulfed in several protracted conflicts, by the grace of God Ghana remains an island of peace in this part of the world," he said during a thanksgiving service of the Ebenezer Presbyterian Church of Ghana at Kyebi, in the Eastern Region. Prior to his speech, Vice President Alhaji Mahama, a Muslim observing the mandatory 30 days Ramadan fasting of Muslims, thrilled the congregation by joining the Okyenhene, Amoatia Ofori Panyin II on the floor to dance to gospel tunes during the offertory. He said the benefits of the Free Compulsory Universal Basic Education, the National Health Insurance Scheme, being implemented by Government and rejuvenation of the Volta Aluminium Company were some of the reasons why Ghanaians should be grateful to God.
Vice President Alhaji Mahama said: "Last year when America was looking for a few selected African countries with best practices in Governance and Economic Management to receive assistance from its Millennium Challenge Corporation, Ghana was favoured and selected. "The financial assistance has come on stream and so far over three million dollars has been disbursed to Ghana for its stated proposals. There is over 260 million dollars available to us (Ghana), under the arrangement." He said the G-8 had forgiven Ghana's external debt of 4.2 billion dollars, saying: "This is unprecedented. It is historic and above all divine".
Vice President Mahama said he had no doubt that God's hand was on the nation hence the need for the citizenry "to put off their political gab for a moment and read the times. "The Bible says that if God does not build the house, the labourers labour in vain. As a Government we have played our part, but it is God who brings about success and we give him the glory and honour," he said.
Mr Yaw Barimah, Regional Minister, appealed to Ghanaians not to allow politics to divide their ranks to undermine development. He said love, unity, respect for tradition and customs were the cardinal points of forging national progress. Okyenhene Osagyefo Ofori Panyin asked the citizenry not to allow partisan politics to undermine national unity. He expressed joy that the victory of the national team, the Black Stars over their Cape Verde counterparts had helped to restore the sense of patriotism among Ghanaians.
"Everybody put politics aside and celebrated the victory", he said. Vice President Mahama donated 10 million cedis towards a fund raising activity by the church for the construction of a 12-unit classroom block, while Mr Albert Kan Dapaah, Minister of Communications and Mr Barimah donated one million cedis each.