The Mohammed VI Foundation of African Oulema announced the inauguration of Ghana’s section in Accra. The inauguration started with a conference which theme is “Common Religious Grounds to promote the values of peace and tolerance”, the 27th and 28th of April, with the presence of a Moroccan delegation. The latter was composed of Doctor Hassan Azzouzi, President of the Local Council of Oulema of Moulay Yacoub Province and lecturer in Sidi Mohammed Ibn Abdellah University in Fez, Doctor Rajae Naji Mekkaoui, Member of the Superior Council of Oulema, Doctor Abdelkader Bitar, Scholar in Mohammed 1st University in Oujda, Ibrahim Rouani, Moroccan reciter and Madame Atiqa Bouhouria, Project Manager at the Mohammed VI Foundation of African Oulema.
By that conference, the Oulema aimed at introducing the Mohammed VI Foundation of African Oulema in order to define the means of communication between Oulema in Ghana and their counterparts in the Kingdom of Morocco in order to establish the common African religious grounds, to provide a bright picture of what a common religious ground stands for, to consolidate the values of tolerance, peace and interfaith dialogue, to highlight the virtues of Sunni concept of Sufism and its impacts on the spiritual stability in Africa, to demonstrate the impacts of the Malikite School of thought in establishing moderation and tolerance in the Muslim communities and to throw light on the comprehensiveness of Al- Asha’ari school of thought to protect the values of religious tolerance.
The seven thematic axes of the conference are as follows:
- Concept and contents of the common African religious grounds.
- Mohammed VI Foundation of African Oulema: The Context of its foundations, objectives and efforts in dissemination of the Values of Peace and Tolerance.
- Common religious grounds and maintenance of the moderation in Africa.
- Upholding the values of peace, dialogue and peaceful coexistence through common religious grounds.
- The impacts of Malikite doctrines on the establishment of moderation stance in, tolerance and peace.
- The fundamentals of the Asha’ari doctrines and their sublime great purposes.
- Religious Sufism spiritual stability of the African societies.
The President of the section of Ghana, Sheikh Mustapha Ibrahim, stated that religious tolerance is the pillar of the foundation in scientific, cultural and intellectual activities related to Islam. He also mentioned the dominant objectives of the foundation such as the consolidation of relations between African countries and their common development, the establishment of religious, scientific and cultural centers and institutions, the unity and coordination of the efforts of Oulema and the revitalization of the common Islamic cultural heritage. Sheikh Ibrahim concluded his speech by showing the importance and benefits of the existence of the section of the Mohammed VI foundation of African Oulema in Ghana.
Furthermore, Professor Atika Bouhouria, Project Manager at the Foundation, stated that the common religious fundamentals contributed to the cohesion of African countries. She also mentioned the objectives of the Mohammed VI Foundation of African Oulema most notably the preservation of common religious constants among African countries. Madame Atika pointed out that the Foundation is not an association, but it is the formulation of the religious, ethical, moral and behavioral strategic plan of Africa.
After that, Doctor Rabiatu Armah, Lecturer and Former Head of the Religious Department in University of Ghana, introduced the principles of Islam, some of which are most notably peace, equality, and tolerance. Doctor Rabiatu mentioned that Islam is about taking actions and that peace is earned by practicing it. Equality and tolerance are the principles of Islam which are the key for coexistence between religions and cultures.
Moreover, Mr. Mohamed Farhat, Ambassador of Morocco in Ghana, stated that the inauguration of the Mohammed VI foundation of African Oulema Section in Ghana is considered as the new pillar of representing bilateral relations between the Kingdom of Morocco and Ghana. His excellence introduced the aims of the foundation as to make the values of a tolerant Islam known, to disseminate and reinforce them.
Then, the National Peace council of Ghana Chairman, Reverend Emmanuel Asante stated that peace is a gift of God and that we should not take it for granted. This is the reason why all religions must unify and don’t allow any religious conflicts. He also mentioned that the world is becoming less peaceful with a decrease of 5% in the last decade. He also mentioned the fact that there is more violence within nations than between them and the reasons of that are facilitate those actions such as poverty and unemployment.
Last but not least, on behalf of the Second Lady of Ghana, Madame Samira Bawumia and the members of the Ghanaian parliament, Mr. Abubakar Seddiq, Representative of the Ghanaian Government, launched the section of the Mohammed VI Foundation of African Oulema in Accra, Ghana by recalling on peace and unity for progress, development and its importance in countering extremism.
In a nutshell, the Ghanaian section of the Mohammed VI foundation of African Oulema duties, in collaboration with the headquarters and the other sections, are to propagate the values of tolerance and peace, to preserve the unity of the Muslim religion and to seize every opportunity for exchanging viewpoints among the Oulema of Africa.