Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has bemoaned the negative impact of violence, which is fuelled by religious misunderstandings, saying it retards national development.
He has, therefore, called for religious tolerance and peaceful co-existence between persons of different religious persuasions.
Vice President Bawumia made the call when he addressed the 87th Annual National Convention of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Mission, Ghana at Pomadze in the Central Region at the weekend.
The three-day convention is under the theme: “Building a Violence-Free Society – The Role of The Citizen”.
The event is being attended by persons across the country and Ahmadis around the world, including the Ameers-in-Charge of Trinidad and Tobago, Kenya and Uganda.
Vice President Bawumia stressed the need for all true Muslims to adhere to the teachings of Prophet Muhammed and emulate his lifestyle.
“Islam as a religion means peace and the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) has taught that a true Muslim is the one from whose tongues and hands all other peaceful people are safe and who is at peace with his neighbours.
“Allah has admonished mankind, particularly Muslims in the Holy Quran Chapter 2 verse 12 that we should not create disorder on the earth.
“These beautiful teachings are what we need as a developing nation and that requires every citizen, particularly those of us who call ourselves Muslims, to put them into practice to show to the rest of the world that violence is an enemy to progress and that our true nature as human beings is to be at peace with one another.
“Muslims and Christians have been living in peace, and Ghana is an oasis of peace in the sub-region, probably among the most peaceful countries in the world today, because of the peace and tolerance that exists between Christians and Muslims in Ghana, Vice President Bawumia pointed out.
“This peace is anchored by the peace and tolerance that exists between Muslims and Christians in Ghana, and we should cherish one another, we should tolerate one another. After all the Prophet Muhammed told us Muslims that in the areas of faith, the people that we should be closest to are the Christians. That is exactly what he said. They should be our closest brothers and sisters,” Vice President Bawumia reminded the Ahmadiyya Convention.
“A peaceful Ghana will lead to a prosperous Ghana,” Vice President Bawumia added.
He said violence was an enemy of progress and an enemy for all regardless of the tribe one belonged, saying violence is our common enemy and we should do all we can to prevent it.
He acknowledged the contributions of all the clergy – Muslim, Christian – the National Peace Council, Civil Society, the security services for their hard work to maintain peace of the country.
“Let’s all come together in the spirit of oneness, in the spirit of togetherness, to keep this nation that God has given us, a very peaceful one,” he added.