Accra, May 05, GNA – Reverend Professor Elom Dovlo has called on religious bodies to move a step further from the level of conflict prevention to building meaningful principles for lasting peace and consensus building in political and social issues.

He said as a country it was important to support our religious life with strong morals and a system of ethical responsibility as the end result of the ceaseless preaching and prayers for social change cannot be easily determined.

Professor Dovlo said this on Thursday during his inaugural lecture at the Great Hall of the University of Ghana.

The lecture on the topic: Public religion in Ghana’s fourth republic: impressions and prospects, centred mainly on the emerging roles of religion in the society and it was chaired by the Vice Chancellor Professor Ernest Ayeetey.

Professor Dovlo said there was the need to put in place new conceptions of political power and authority and these should include ethical and legal norms adding that though several institutions have developed or revamped their code of ethics, an equally important thing to do was to maintain a strict mechanism for upholding their values.

He said it was in this regard that the roles of the Moral Rearmament Ghana and the National Peace Council must be enhanced to play more useful roles in the society.

Professor Dovlo said since the fourth republican constitution was promulgated, many religious organisations have prayed for a God-fearing president who would seek the guidance of God in making political choices but it was not right for people to construe our political elections as a form of biblical ordination and that a balance must be sought whereby the notion of biblical election or ordination is not profaned and abused in Ghanaian elections.

He said the traditional concept of power and authority as something that is spiritual still remains very dominant in the society and many political candidates have established their religious credentials as the ordained or the Elect, by proclaiming to be a God fearing man, or the use of gospel songs as was done by Captain Effa-Darteh to establish his claims for the presidency.

Professor Dovlo said in a society where many believed that it is God who ordains rulers, there are still many politicians who confuse their own will with that of the will of God and that it is even possible that an atheist pretender can easily become the president of the nation where many of its citizenry are religiously gullible.

He said if we claim to be God fearing then we should try to maintain peace ourselves and insist on it from our political candidates rather than expecting miraculous interventions through prayers as various  religious bodies have started their relentless prayers, preaching and exhorting Ghanaians to be peaceful and ensure a violence free election.

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