Leaders from Religious Freedom Congress Visit President of Ghana

News April 2006

Dr Graz makes a presentation to President Kufuor

Accra, Ghana… Leaders from the International Religious Liberty Association's Congress in Accra visited the president of Ghana today April 27, at his request.

His Excellency John A. Kufuor received ten representatives from the second All-Africa Congress on Religious Liberty and welcomed the opportunity to speak on his convictions regarding such fundamental freedoms.

"It comes very natural to us to respect the right to freedom," the president told his visitors, noting that Ghana subscribes to all the international agreements on human rights. "When we heard you were coming we were delighted at this Congress on freedom. It is a great honour for us that you chose to come to Ghana for this event, indeed you are paying a great tribute to me and my government."

He also commented on his perspective regarding religious diversity, part of the Congress' theme, 'Religious Liberty: Co-existence in Peace and Freedom in Diversity.'

"I also like the idea of all religions attending this Congress," he noted. "Unfortunately much of our world today is suffering because of many conflicts and misunderstandings over religion. If we as individuals express ourselves and understand each other, then religious extremism will be done away with and this will make for happier times and a more peaceful world. We believe your way should be the way of the whole world."

Leading the IRLA delegation was Dr. John Graz, secretary-general. "We appreciated being received by the president, and particularly his supportive comments about the importance of religious freedom and the need to combat religious intolerance. We believe it is possible to have strong religious convictions yet still live together in respecting each other," Graz commented. "The Congress has been a great success, with significant media coverage and good local interest. We are especially delighted for the interest shown by His Excellency the President, and as we concluded in our final Congress declaration, praise the high standard of religious freedom which prevails in Ghana."

The IRLA delegation also included Japheth Agboka, Samuel Larmie, Geoffrey Mbwana, Gilbert Wari, Hensley Moorooven, Seth Laryea, Joe Hagan, Eugene Hsu, and Jonathan Gallagher. [IRLA News]

L to R: Jonathan Gallagher, Eugene Hsu, John Graz, President Kufuor

L to R: Geoffrey Mbwana, Hensley Moorooven, Mutuku Mutinga, John Graz, President Kufuor