Churches urged to collaborate with civil society organisations on social justice

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Accra, Sept.6, GNA- Apostle Professor Opoku-Onyinah, the immediate past President of the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC) has urged churches to partner civil society organisations working on social justice to end all forms of injustice in the country.
He said those working on social justice understood and were professionals in their work and would be able to bring their professionalism to bare on what they were doing, adding that churches had significant roles to play so far as social justice was concerned.
He said this at the maiden National Justice Conference organised by the International Justice Mission (IJM) in collaboration with the Bible Society of Ghana (BSG) in Accra on the theme: “Social Justice: Key to National Development”.
Apostle Opoku-Onyinah said there was the need for Churches to interact with the community and educate parents on the consequences of allowing their children to be trafficked and in some cases selling them.
Hajia Mrs Samira Bawumia, the Second Lady of the Republic said there was the need for stakeholders to work together and see each other as partners not competitors to eliminate all forms of injustice in the country.
“Let us work together to ensure that no child is left behind,” she said adding that “we cannot aspire to be a developed nation if we allow injustice to thrive”.
Mrs Bawumia was hopeful that there would be increased public education, arrest and prosecution to serve as deterrent to all who would dare to buy or sell children.
She said government took significant steps to address the issue of human trafficking despite limited resources, noting that the country increased its law enforcement by prosecuting and convicting an increased number of traffickers including; several convictions related to forced labour on the Volta Lake.
On his part, Bishop Hilliard Dogbe, Bishop of A.M.E Zion Church said issues of Justice and Human Rights must not be relegated as they sought to impede on human dignity and identity as well as deprive many of their rights to leave full and meaningful lives.
Issues of justice, he said were of national concern, noting that, because of injustice, many  people and communities would continue to perpetuate injustice on each other if nothing was done urgently to address it.
He said injustice turns to dehumanize individuals and even demonize others, depriving many of their capacity to leave a full and meaningful life.
Bishop Dogbe said the church had a significant role to play in ensuring and promoting social justice to enhance the wellbeing of people in the communities for national development.

He said collaboration must not be between faith communities, but must include governmental and non-governmental agencies in improving society.
He added advocacy was also relevant to promote social justice, freedom and the wellbeing of the individual and families.
Madam Freda Prempeh, a Deputy Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection said there was the need for collective effort towards combating human trafficking.
She said injustice came in many ways like child abuse, child labour, domestic violence, gender based violence, and human trafficking among others, noting that injustice was becoming a norm and acceptable for individuals to see wrong as rights.
She urged the youth to remember that the way to seeking greener pastures was education and that only hard work and God’s blessings would bring success as well as wealth.
She urged the National Media Commission, the Ghana Journalists Association and the Ghana Standards Authority to help monitor and regulate contents on television networks across the country.

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