Tonight, Friday night, many devout Christians in Ghana, and in most Ghanaian-dominated ‘Churches’, at different levels in their walk with God will be gathering at various places of worship for special prayers. My suspicion is, these ubiquitous ‘All-night’ prayers, will be somewhat intense than the usual.
Ghana is in mourning!
Ghana mourns the preventable tragic loss of countless lives at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle Goil Fuel Station and surrounding area. My deepest condolences to the bereaved families, and all those affected in one way or another, by the explosion and floods.
Prayers are good! I believe in prayers as the very breath of every Christian’s life. Prayers are needed to dethrone ancient systemic evils. Ghanaian Christians offer the widest variety of prayers and pseudo-prayers per capita in comparison to most praying nations in the world, if not more than any other nation.
There is also a time to act, and act we must NOW!
Blames should be generously shared by many including the current government and officials with any form of oversight in the Accra region and maybe, beyond.
And why not?
10 March 2012, the Ghana Government signed two memoranda of understanding (MoU) with two US companies for the reconstruction of drains in Accra. $595 million dollars was earmarked for a new drainage system.
12 June 2013, the Mayor of Accra, Hon. Dr. Alfred Oko Vanderpuye, reiterated his commitment to making Accra one of the best cities on the continent. He said this during a forum of Chiefs and Assembly members organized by the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) to announce the official commencement of the project.
Then, on a report on 8 June, 2014, cites President Mahama directing “the Ministry of Finance to release funds for the commencement” of this project in Accra, as he toured some flood ravaged parts of the Accra.
One would think that with all this media pageantry and pump, this drainage system work would be completed or even have started.
The explosion at the station and flooding caused by torrential rains that killed 150 or more people is a reminder of the gross disregard for the welfare and lives of the citizens these Government officials – elected or otherwise – have sworn to uphold and protect.
When leaders fail to lead, bad things happen. . . . very bad things happen!
These government officials must be held accountable for this gross dereliction of duty, and wanton wickedness. Also, citizens who have violated laws by building structures impeding water flow or/and ignored warnings to appropriately dispose of waste, need to take some of the blame.
It saddens me deeply to direct a significant portion of the bitter blame to the Church, the Body of Christ, and specifically Church/Christian leaders that have been silent about these horrible conditions all this while. This is the circle of influence I’m most familiar with, and that is why I’m heartbroken.
We, the Church leaders have miserably failed our followers!
Pastors, Bishops, Prophets, and whatever titles we choose to go by — have failed our followers! Most have been betrayed, first by the silence and refusal to address the nauseating corruption at the halls and heights of power.
Martin Luther King Jr, said. . . .
“OUR LIVES BEGIN TO END THE DAY WE BECOME SILENT ABOUT THINGS THAT MATTER.”
Telling our followers to ‘pray harder’, ‘bind and loose’, ‘decree and declare’, ‘fast’ and lubricating ourselves with gallons of anointing oil, expect our ‘prophetic breakthrough’, and ‘giving it all to God’, will not get the drainage system fixed!
There is a time to pray! And there are times to speak up!
Are these government ministers and officials not attending our ‘churches’? Are they not praying ‘dangerous’ prayers with us? Are they not climbing Prayer Mountains and praying harder? Why haven’t our prayers and preaching changed their hearts?
Furthermore, a deeper problem exists when many Christian leaders exploit multitudes with anti-witchcraft messages, signs-and-wonders proclamations, cotton-candy prosperity gospel, and mystic name-it-and-claim-it motivational talks bearing no resemblance of the Gospel of God’s Kingdom. These fads have woefully become the order of most ‘Churches’.
Our message must change!
Messages advocating developing skills, building industries and educational empowerment are severely lacking in most pulpits. This is the time to stop waiting for manna from heaven, and go into the fields to build and produce. It is good to believe in the miracle working power of God, but we must not wait for God to dam up the flood waters of Accra. We should rather equip and empower our people to dare to construct dams, develop water and drainage systems, harness the powers of nature to improve our lives and give glory to God Almighty.
It is time to demonstrate through our preaching that, we believe that God is with us and we can build a prosperous nation with the bountiful resources entrusted to us!
So as we mourn, as we pray. . . .
May we have the courage to hold people accountable, and also teach our people to choose leaders with integrity.
How should Christian/Church Leaders contribute to our Nation-building, especially in times like these?