The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo urges the Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture to develop a strategy to make the National Mosque Complex a place of pilgrimage.
He said effort must be made to profile the beautiful edifice as a tourist destination for travelers to our country.
“This beautiful Complex is a replica of the famous Blue Mosque in Istanbul, Turkey, which has become one of the most visited mosques in the world for the purposes of tourism. I expect that we should also nurture and take care of this mosque, and build its profile as a tourist destination for travelers to our country.
“Fortunately, our Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture is a devout Muslim and an astute businessman, and I expect him to craft an appropriate strategy to make this beautiful edifice a place of pilgrimage,” he stated.
The President said this on Friday, 16th July 2021 at the commissioning of the National Mosque of Ghana Complex, at a brief ceremony at Nima.
The edifice contains a grand mosque which is the second largest in West Africa, an office complex for the National Chief Imam, a clinic fitted with laboratories and a pharmacy, a library and a morgue.
“The minaret of this mosque is very visible from many parts of Accra. For me, it is not just the beauty that it adds to Accra’s skyline that excites me necessarily. I am even more excited by the fact that, as a Christian-majority country, a symbol of Islam can beautifully adorn our landscape, and expose the beauty of religious harmony that we enjoy in Ghana, and which continues to be the envy of the rest of the world,” the President said.
Acknowledging the importance of a mosque in the theological architecture of Islam, he noted that Prophet Mohammed’s Mosque in Madina continues to be a site of pilgrimage for devotees from across the world.
The mosque, President Akufo-Addo explained, is not just a place of prayer, stressing that “it is a hub for social and cultural activities. In other words, a mosque is supposed to bring people together, and not divide them”.
He, thus, urged the National Chief Imam and members of the Muslim fraternity to use the occasion of the commissioning of the Complex to foster even further the unity of the Muslim Ummah in Ghana, and, by extension, the unity of the Ghanaian people.
On his part, the President pledged to continue to serve Ghanaians with all his strength and with all his heart.
“I shall continue to be faithful to my presidential oath, and, hopefully, I can count on your support and the support of the Ghanaian people to make our country great and strong,” he added.
With the current and immediate past Presidents of the Republic of Niger, their Excellencies Mohammed Bazoum and Mahamadou Issoufou, and Professor Ali Erbaş, President of the Directorate of Religious Affairs of Turkey, present, President Akufo-Addo applauded the National Chief Imam, Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu, as well as the Government and people of the Republic of Turkey for its financial and technical support offered towards the construction of the Complex.