The National Chief Imam, Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu has called for the arrest of Imams and for that matter, Muslims who defy the President’s directive on the moratorium on all religious gatherings.
He said Islam frowns on disregard for authority, adding that his office will not countenance any act of rebellion.
President AKufo-Addo as part of measures to control and contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic on Sunday, March 15 and effect Monday, March 16 directed placed a ban on all mass public gathering including religious activities, funerals and conferences. Consequently, he ordered the closedown of all churches and schools until further notice.
But some religious entities perpetually fail to comply with the directive.
In the case of Islamic worship in the country, reports indicate that some imams in certain parts of the country still gather people for prayers on a daily basis while others open their mosques to the public for Friday congregation.
Speaking in an interview with Accra-based Class FM Thursday, Spokesperson for the National Chief Imam, Sheikh Aremeyaw Shaibu condemned the act and charged the law enforcing agencies to do round such people up for interrogations.
“When we take the issue of disregard for authority then those who are supposed to be enforcing laws or directives need to move in and perform their duties
“For example, if there is any security institution; that is, the police, they should be able to invite imams there for questioning; question him about his refusal to comply with the directive of the President and that of the National Chief Imam,” he said.
He added that “in fact, the information did not come to us directly. As we kept on educating people on the radio and on the television; in fact, somebody has drawn our attention to it and we have advised those in the area to draw the attention of the police and the chiefs in the community.”
Sheikh Aremeyaw further pledged the office of the National Chief Imam’s resolve to join forces with the police to clamp down on the flouters.
“We are going to monitor this Friday and see exactly some of the reports we shall get. We will make sure that if we have to team up with the police and request that they move in areas where we have been told that this is what is happening…
“I think it is also important that the police should deploy, especially on Sundays and Fridays to be able to identify the religious facilities in which congregational devotion is taking place; and I think that we have to question; whether it’s a pastor whether it’s an imam he must be invited for questioning,” he said.