The refurbished Kumasi Central Mosque
THE ISLAMIC community in Kumasi, the Ashanti regional capital, is brimming with rage following the decision of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to use the Kumasi Central Mosque as venue for their internal polls last Saturday.
According to some of the aggrieved persons, the mosque is a religious and sacred place therefore it was not appropriate for it (mosque) to be used for a political activity, hence their extreme anger and frustration.
NDC Denied Access To Mosque
Checks made by the DAILY GUIDE indicated that the leadership of the NDC in Asawase Constituency, where the mosque is located, initially made their plans to use the mosque for their polls known to the management of the facility but they were denied.
The Chairman of the Kumasi Central Mosque Management Council, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdul Rahman, reportedly, informed the NDC in a polite manner that the place was a sacred and religious ground so it could not be used for a political programme.
Later on, one Ustaz Ahmed, said to be the Secretary of the Kumasi Central Mosque Management Council, allegedly, took a GH¢600 as user fee charge from the NDC and allowed them to use the place for their internal polls.
According to reports, Ustaz Ahmed, virtually, stabbed the other members of the Management Council in the back as he reportedly took the user fee at the blindside of the other members of the Council.
A receipt, which confirmed the collection of the GH¢600 amount, has been sighted by the DAILY GUIDE. It was issued on May 11, 2023, two days before the NDC polls. It captured one Mohammed Munir, as the one who paid the amount on behalf of the NDC.
The receipt also had inscription, which read “the sum of Six Hundred Cedis, being usage of the Central Mosque Compound”.
Chairman’s Warning Ignored
Meanwhile, prior to the elections, the Chairman of the Mosque Management Council, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdul Rahman, had issued a strong warning that the mosque could not be used for the NDC polls.
Having learnt that the NDC were bent on using the place for their election, he issued the caution, which was contained in a statement, dated May 12, 2023. It was headlined “Unapproved NDC-Primary Election at the Premises of the Kumasi Central Mosque”.
Part of the letter said, “The attention of the chairman and executive members of the Kumasi Central Mosque Management Council has been drawn to media announcements indicating that the NDC Asawase primary election would be held on Saturday, May 13, 2023, at the Kumasi Central Mosque.
“The chairman of the Management Council wishes to state that no permission has been given to any political party, viz-the NDC, for primary election activities as the mosque is not meant for party political election purposes.
“The Central Mosque Management Council therefore wishes to give urgent NOTICE to the NDC-Asawase Constituency to immediately relocate and cancel their intended use of the Kumasi Central Mosque to protect the sanctity of the mosque.”
The letter was addressed to the NDC Ashanti Regional Chairman and the Asawase Constituency NDC Chairman, with copies being sent to the Regional Police Commander, Manhyia Divisional Command, Regional BNI Commander and others.
Interestingly, this caution from the chairman of the Central Mosque Management Council was ignored by the NDC, who went ahead to organise the party elections at the sacred ground.
Mosque Broken Into
The paper gathered that last Saturday, the main gates to the mosque, which was recently renovated by Vice President Dr. Mahamadu Bawumia, were locked.
Surprisingly, the NDC members, who were bent on using the sacred place for their presidential and parliamentary elections, forcibly broke into the Central Mosque compound to hold their polls.
One Nuru Ahmed, a staunch NDC member in Asawase, was said to have led a group to forcibly break into the compound of the mosque, and his infamous action has sparked anger among the Islamic community and members of the Mosque Management Council.