President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Friday joined thousands of Muslims made up of diplomats, ministers, Members of Parliament, chiefs and opinion leaders, among others, to mark this year’s Eid-Ul-Adha at the Independence Square.

Led in prayer by the National Chief Imam, Shiehk Osuman Nuhu Sharabutu, the Muslims offered prayers to mark the Muslim Feast of Sacrifice for Allah to enable them to sacrifice personal interests for the common good of society.

Eid-Ul-Adha is an important religious festival on the Islamic calendar during which Muslims pray and meditate in commemoration of “The Duty of Sacrifice” dating back to the era of Prophet Abraham.

President Akufo-Addo used the occasion to appeal to the Muslim Community in Ghana to always be worthy ambassadors of peace.

He said: “In a world where the beautiful religion of Islam has virtually been hijacked by people who pervert its values, every Muslim should make it his or her responsibility to be an example of what it means to be Muslim.”

The President said his government was committed to maintaining the atmosphere “that allows people of all religious persuasions to practice their religion without let or hindrance.”

“One of the many things about which our nation can be proud is the peace and mutual respect that exists amongst people of all religious persuasions,” he said, urging the people of Ghana to continue to live in harmony and mutual understanding to ensure prosperity for all.

Noting the significant contribution of Muslims to Ghana’s development, President Akufo-Addo said the leading figures involved in the transformation agenda of his government were Muslims.

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“And I am happy to state that many Muslims are making significant contributions to national development and, in my government in particular, where some of the leading figures involved in the transformation agenda are Muslims,” he said.

The President expressed delight that the annual Hajj problems had been reduced this year, praying that Allah grants those who undertook the pilgrimage to Mecca a successful hajj rite and safe return home.

He further urged the Muslim Community to take advantage the of the Free Senior High School initiative set to begin in a fortnight, to guarantee the future prosperity of their children.

“I believe that Muslims should embrace this policy because it allows the fulfilment of Prophetic admonishment. It allows us to enlighten our communities and bring illumination to our society. It allows us to guarantee a future for our children and our country,” President Akufo-Addo said.

“How do we seek knowledge as a religious duty if we do not have the means to seek it? The Prophet is also reported to have said that; ‘one knowledgeable believer is harder on the devil than a 100 ignorant believers,” he said.

President Akufo-Addo said: “We are in a better position to practice our religion, if we are educated. The Free Senior High School Policy eliminates one of the major barriers to seeking secondary education – poverty. It is my fervent belief that it is an educated population that can accelerate the development of our country.”

“I cannot end my statement without urging the education of the Muslim girl or woman. We must take the education of the girl child seriously. We shall be perpetuating ignorance, poverty and disease if the trainers of generations of Ghanaians remain uneducated,” the President said.

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Source: GNA/NewsGhana.com.gh