A Bishop’s fulminations and the ire of presidential attack dogs

Posted by By at 18 February, at 06 : 37 AM Print

A Bishop’s fulminations and the ire of presidential attack dogs
A Bishop’s fulminations and the ire of presidential attack dogs

 

We have already compared the benefits of theology and science. When the theologian governed the world, it was covered with huts and hovels for the many, palaces and cathedrals for the few. To nearly all the children of men, reading and writing were unknown arts. The poor were clad in rags and skins – they devoured crusts, and gnawed bones. The day of Science dawned, and the luxuries of a century ago are the necessities of to-day. Men in the middle ranks of life have more of the conveniences and elegancies than the princes and kings of the theological times. But above and over all this, is the development of mind. There is more of value in the brain of an average man of to-day – of a master-mechanic, of a chemist, of a naturalist, of an inventor, than there was in the brain of the world four hundred years ago.
These blessings did not fall from the skies. These benefits did not drop from the outstretched hands of priests. They were not found in cathedrals or behind altars – neither were they searched for with holy candles. They were not discovered by the closed eyes of prayer, nor did they come in answer to superstitious supplication. They are the children of freedom, the gifts of reason, observation and experience – and for them all, man is indebted to man
.” – Robert Green Ingersoll,

It is not every day that our clergy people give us something to cheer about.

We have consistently, as a matter of fact and record, argued in this column that our religious leaders are part of the problem bedeviling the land. We have posited that the spiritual elite are in cahoots with the political elite to keep us in blissful ignorance, whilst they rape our national resources for their selfish ends. Our elite consign us to trotros while they tool around in comfortable 4-wheel jeeps. They tell us to wait for an after-life paradise while they enjoy their own alujanahs right here on earth.

We even came up with the RAP idea, which we believe is leading Ghana/Africa into utter perdition.

RAP is our acronym for the three evils of Religion, Alcohol and Politics – three evils that have contributed the most to the destruction of our societies in Africa.

However, now and then a member of the clergy, for whatever reasons, breaks rank and voice strong opinions that resonates with what we try to convey with our own feeble voice.

That happened again last week when a senior clergy man in Obuasi came out swinging against the hardship in the country.

bishop garb

This is how it was reported: “The Methodist Bishop of Obuasi in the Ashanti Region, Rt. Rev. Stephen Bosomtwe Ayensu, has in an unusual fashion criticized the Mahama administration, tagging the President as too dull on the job.

The Reverend obviously angered and frustrated by the current economic hardship in the country, asked members of the clergy to stop fasting and praying for the nation, and rather speak against the ills of the Government.

According to him, enough prayers have been said for the country yet nothing positive seems to be happening.

Rt. Rev. Stephen Bosomtwe Ayensu, who was speaking at a crusade organized by the Methodist Church at Obuasi Black Park in the Ashanti Region, admonished his fellow men in the clergy to start taking the government and its officials on in demanding stewardship of their offices.

“It is about time we the men of God took the President and his Ministers on face-to-face. We have prayed and fasted, prophesied and done everything spiritually possible to no avail and it’s time to now question the .president and his ministers,” Rt. Rev. Stephen Bosomtwe Ayensu charged.

Rt. Rev. Bosomtwe Ayensu in a desperate mood wondered why in his estimation the President seems so unconcerned about the plight of the people. He described the posturing of government as akin to a paralyzed body incapable of taking hold of its affairs. In his own words he described the President and the Government as acting as if they had suffered from ‘’stroke’’.

The President is not just slow. He is slow. It’s as if he and the Government are suffering from stroke. He seems so unconcerned about our sufferings. Times are so hard and life is simply unbearable. He must wake up to realities and stop sleeping on the job.

Rev. Bosomtwe Ayensu chided the President for turning a blind eye to the spiraling increases in fuel prices, water and electricity tariffs and the problems confronting the NHIS capitation programme being piloted in the Ashanti Region. He warned they will soon demonstrate against the programme since Government had remained on their complaints.

He says the President has chosen to rather listen to his cronies who voted for him to the detriment of the nation at large.”

http://news.peacefmonline.com/pages/religion/201401/187788.php

Thank you, bishop, thank you very much. May your god continue to grant you the courage to speak up publicly on issues that affects our dear nation.

We have consistently said in this column that our vast hypocrisy in this country will still be our great undoing.

Despite our pretensions, we hate the truth. Despite all our religious pretensions, we are among the worst hypocrites in the world.

For his honest appraisal of the sad state of our nation, all that Bishop Bosomtwe Ayensu received were torrents of abuse and criticism from NDC apparatchiks and government rented mouths.

Sample fulminations:

  1. Bishop Bosomtwe’s accusations of Mahama unfortunate – Kwakye Ofosu

http://myjoyonline.com/politics/2014/January-30th/bishop-bosomtwes-accusations-of-mahama-unfortunate-kwakye-ofosu.php

Government has described as unfortunate claims by the Methodist Bishop of Obuasi Diocese, Rt. Rev. Stephen Bosomtwe Ayensu that the Mahama government is dull and insensitive to the plight of Ghanaians.

Deputy information minister, Felix Kwakye Ofosu said the government respects the rights and the views of the church leader but disagrees with him.

Rev Bosomtwe Ayensu is unimpressed with the manner in which the country is being governed.

In an interview on Adom FM’s “Dwaso Nsεm” programme, the Methodist Bishop said the country is reeling under severe economic hardships.

He cited among other things the rising cost of living, triggered by hikes in utilities and petroleum products.

But in a response, the deputy minister said the facts on the ground disproves the claim being made by Reverend Bosomtwe.

Kwakye Ofosu told Joy News that even when the Public Utility and Regulatory Commission announced hikes in utilities late last year, government quickly intervened and absorbed part of the hikes as subsidies.

That, he said cannot be a government that is insensitive to the plights of Ghanaians.

The deputy information minister further noted that government still pays subsidies to cushion the suffering masses.

Kwakye Ofosu also said the various managers of the economy are working tirelessly to fix whatever problems there are with the economy and for anybody to suggest that President John Mahama is unwilling to address the problems is unfortunate.”

Fortunately, Kwakye Ofosu’s response was measured, to the point, devoid of abuses or insults and it was professionally delivered.

However the retorts of other government supporters was anything but.

2.      Don’t take offerings if times are difficult -Twum Boafo replies Methodist Bishop

http://myjoyonline.com/news/2014/February-1st/dont-take-offerings-if-times-are-difficult-twum-boafo-replies-methodist-bishop.php

The Chief Executive of the Ghana Free Zones Board, Kojo Twum Boafo has castigated the Methodist Bishop for Obuasi, Rt Rev Stephen Richard Bosomtwi-Ayensu for criticising the Mahama-led administration.

He has accused the Reverend Minister of “standing in the pulpit and doing NPP’s agenda” instead of appreciating government’s efforts in solving the myriad of challenges in the country.

He said on Radio Gold Friday morning that, Rt. Rev Bosomtwi-Ayensu would not get away with his words, stressing that, “He is not going to get away with it. He is going to get a response and that response is going to continue until he clarifies what it is he wanted to say because you can’t just get up and talk about the president of this republic that way.”

Mr Twum Boafo accused the clergy of being hypocrites, saying, “There is a certain hypocrisy among certain sections of the pastoral community in this country. They have an agenda and that agenda is that by hook or crook they must remove the Mahama led administration. For those of them who are shouting that Ghana is hard, Ghana is hard, how many of them have told their congregation that today because Ghana is hard don’t give us any collection,” he said.

He suggested that instead of taking offering from the congregation on Sundays, “they should tell their congregation that Ghana is hard so don’t put any collection in the offertory and that we are rather going to give you money.”

So, without debating the merit or demerit’s of the Bishop’s postulations, the Kojo Twum Boafos of this world believe that they are rendering the president a great service by jumping into the gutter, froth at the mouth and sling mud?

Here is another imbecilic contribution by someone who apparently woke up in a pito bar to make contribution:

3.      Rev Bosomtwe Ayensu is a known NPP man -Solomon Nkansah claims

http://myjoyonline.com/politics/2014/January-31st/rev-bosomtwe-ayensu-is-a-known-npp-man-solomon-nkansah-claims.php

Deputy Propaganda Secretary of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), Solomon Nkansah is alleging the Obuasi Diocese Methodist Bishop who chided government for making life unbearable for Ghanaians is a “known member of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP)”.

He intimated the Bishop’s comment does not come to him as a surprise because he (Rt. Rev. Stephen Bosomtwe Ayensu) has been very critical of the NDC since it came to power in 2009.

Solomon Nkansah made the claim while reacting to concerns raised by the Methodist Bishop about the performance of President John Mahama.

But speaking on Asempa FM’s Ekosii Sen programme Friday, Solomon Nkansah alleged that Rt. Rev. Bosomtwe Ayensu is one of the people poached by the NPP to “sink NDC”.

According to him, since the NPP has lost credibility in the Ghanaian body politic, it needs opinion leaders and respected people in the country to prosecute its agenda against government.”

Hmmm.

So, what exactly is Propaganda Secretary Solomon Nkansah telling us? That being a member of the largest opposition party is a sentence to keep quiet and not comment on national issues? Or that it is only government supporters and mouth-pieces that should be allowed to comment?

We have lamented our pains at the way our president surrounded himself with pure court jesters who cannot elevate any debate.

We have said, times without number, that the governance of a country is far too important to be left at the hands of any but the best materials the country, especially a developing one like ours, can offer. We gave examples of Asian countries where the best graduates are drafted into the civil service.

Sadly, our president, for reasons best known to him, still keep in his cabinet some babies with sharp teeth – our apologies to President JJ Rawlings.

Listen to another one of them who thought the best way he could serve his president was to criticize another clergy:

4.      Fear-gripped-pastors want Mahama to fail- Yamin

http://myjoyonline.com/politics/2014/February-4th/fear-gripped-pastors-want-mahama-to-fail-yamin.php

Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports is alleging that most of the religious leaders in the country have stopped praying for President John Mahama because they don’t want him to succeed.

According to him, the pastors fear if they pray and God intervenes in the current socio-economic conditions in the country, John Mahama will be retained as president after the 2016 general elections.

Joseph Yamin made the comment on Asempa FM while discussing the famous prophetic prayer by the General Overseer of the Christian Action Faith Ministry, Archbishop Nicholas Duncan-Williams for Ghana’s economy.

Juxtaposing the Bishop’s divine intervention to the utterances of other clergymen, Joseph Yamin said majority of them [pastors] want President Mahama to fail.

He intimated that most of churches have stop praying for the nation because the pastors tell their congregants to pray for themselves and family to be successful.

The Deputy Sports Minister cited how pastors constantly prayed for former President Kufuor and the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) to succeed when in government” but today listen to them and see how many times they pray for John Mahama and his NDC government”.

“When the Kufuor government was about to introduce the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), pastors propagated it in their churches but today what has changed?” he quizzed.”

Now that we have seen in Mr. Yamin the caliber of people that advice our Chief Executive, we should longer be surprised that things seem to be going downhill in Ghana.

Should we not ask Mr. President what crime we committed to make him inflict imbecilic characters like Yamin on us as a minister?

What exactly did Bishop Bosomtwe Ayensu said that incurred the wrath of the president’s men? Did the good bishop tell a lie about the hardship in the country? Are things rosy in today’s Ghana? Are we blind to the fact that there is anguish in the land? Is it untrue that unemployment and productivity is low in our dear republic? Is it a lie that our currency is fast turning into a monopoly currency? What evidence is there to show that the economy is being managed well or that the mangers of the economy know what they are doing? Why have we been unable to reduce our unsustainable import bills? Is it untrue that we are staggering under onerous debt or that we are weigh down by huge, unsustainable wage bills? It is a lie that we still don’t know what our president’s industrial and manufacturing policies are? Is it a lie that our president spend inordinate time with pastors and at churches? Is it a lie that our president has opened more churches than factories? Is it not true that we spend more time in praying than in working? Is it a lie that we build more churches and mosques than factories, laboratories and schools put together?

These are the questions the president’s attack dogs should answer instead of deafening our ears with their cacophonous noises.

No, no. Mr. Yamin, those of us that criticize our presidents do not wish him to fail. If we want him to fail, the best we would do is keep our counsels and let lick-spittle sycophants like yourself keep deluding him that all is well and jolly. If we wish the president to fail, we would not be offering him criticism/advice on what other people have done to turn their fortunes around or show him examples other leaders have follow. If we don’t love our leader/country, we will sit back and let flatterers like yourself keep ill-advising Mr. President. History is replete with leaders who lamented how their advisors badly misadvised them. But then it is always too late.

May the gods continue to save us from ourselves.

PS: When we think that things cannot get worse or funnier in Ghana Inc, came another whopper. Sample this: XCLUSIVE AUDIO: How Duncan-Williams Prayed For The Falling Cedi

Archbishop Nicholas Duncan-Williams on Sunday led his followers, to pray for the recovery of the fast depreciating cedis.

The Presiding Bishop and General Overseer of the Christian Action Faith Ministries (CAFM) spiritually “commanded” the dwindling cedi to “rise”.

http://news.peacefmonline.com/pages/religion/201402/188284.php

Will someone kindly advise the archbishop to stop making a fool of himself?

When would these shameless, cassocked charlatans stop disgracing themselves and making us look like complete fools to the rest of the world?

The immutable law of economics stipulates that our currency will continue to fall until we match our productivity/export with our imports.

We cannot continue to produce little or nothing but develop gluttonous appetite for imports and hope that prayers will keep our currency on even keel.

 

About the Author

Femi Akomolafe is a passionate Pan-Africanist. A columnist for the Accra-based Daily Dispatch newspaper and Correspondent for the New African magazine. Femi lives in both Europe and Africa, and writes regularly on Africa-related issues for various newspapers and magazines.

Femi was the producer of the FOCUS ON AFRICANS TV Interview programme for the MultiTV Station.

He is also the CEO of Alaye Dot Biz Limited Dot Biz, a Kasoa-based Multimedia organisation that specialises in Audio and Video Production. He loves to shoot and edit video documentaries.

His highly-acclaimed books (“Africa: Destroyed by the gods,” “Africa: It shall be well,” “18 African Fables & Moonlight Stories” and “Ghana: Basic Facts + More”) are now available for sales at the following bookshops/offices:

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