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GII launches Anti-Corruption Training Manual to enhance the knowledge and skills of Religious Bodies

As part of effort to complement government in the fight against corruption and the implementation of the National Anti-corruption Action plan, the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), with the support of DANIDA have launched an Anti-corruption training manual for faith based and civil society organisations to raise awareness on issues of corruption and enhance their capacity to report and address the pervasive canker.

Speaking in an interview with the press at the DANIDA Interfaith Project, Speak up, Resist and report corruption by the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) in Accra on the theme “Improving the role of faith based and Civil society Organisations in the fight against corruption”, the Executive Director of GII, Linda Ofori-Kwafo said that religious leaders cannot be neglected in the fight against corruption due to their role and influence in shaping the values and integrity of society as a large percentage of Ghanaians who belong to one religious group or the other.

She said”we realised that Ghanaians in general are very religious in nature. About 90% belong to one religious group or the other, they go to the mosque on Friday and church on sunday.These people are the same that work in the public Institutions, the private sector etc.We know our religious leaders, the Imams, the pastors, and priest are very influencial people that a lot of people follow, they follow them and live by what they teach them, and so we are trying to reach many more people with the Anti-corruption message, we have actually acknowledged and recognised that the religious organisations and bodies provide a big platform that we can actually use to get this message.

According to her, the manual was also designed to help support religious leaders to reach out to more people in order to help increase Anti-corruption crusaders who will also assist people to understand the negative effect of corruption in the socio-economic development of the country.

She observed” so if you know corruption is wrong in the church, it is expected that the individual will be able to implement what they have been able to learn from the manual when they get to the office”.

When asked if Ghana has performed well in the fight against corruption, Madam Ofori Kwafo said Ghana has indeed performed well in some aspect especially in areas such as establishing Institutions, passage of laws, building the capacity of people working in these Institutions, signing on to International Conventions among others but ” our major challenge for so many years is our inability to translate this beautiful legislation into enforcement and sanctions of the corrupt”. she stressed.

She maintained that even though people may not be able to define corruption per se, they know what constitute acts of corruption and so until laws are enforced and people sanctioned, the training manual would be an essential tool for people to understand, report and resist corruption which ever form it takes.

The Executive Director further indicated their readiness to work with the ministry of Education to develop a simple training manual to enable teachers appreciate and teach students to equally understand more on issues of corruption.

  • The spokes person for the national Chief Imam, Sheikh Aremeyaw Shaibu on his part said both Muslims and christians should be committed to the fight against corruption in order to help support the country’s collective effort of addressing the canker.

He emphasised ” to be corrupt is to say you don’t care about the next person close to you, to be corrupt is to say you are not committed to our collective development and I think it is worrying and disturbing for a country that is made up of more than 90% people committed to religion”.

According to him, corruption has permeated the social fabric of society due to the failure of people to live by Godly principles despite professing to love God. “we have a weak spirit in fighting corruption, Muslims and Christians are in this country and indeed though our country is circular it has a deep sense of God in our state values, so when we sing the national anthem we begin with God, God bless our homeland Ghana, Where do we place God in our national affairs when we are corrupt”? He quizzed.

Sheikh Aremeyaw therefore appealed to religious bodies to uphold this manual and use it judiciously to help purge corruption in society.

The clergy, civil society organisations, Moslem clerics and the academia commended Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) and DANIDA for the project and pledged to support them.

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