Ghana police warns preachers ahead of new year; be measured in your utterances or end up in jail

Ghana police service has released a statement, warning preachers against causing fear and panic with their doomsday prophesies ahead of the new year.

Over the years, some preachers in the country have issued prophetic pronouncements that include death threats, controversial political predictions and other issues that borders on National security concerns, especially during their 31st December watchnight services; a development the new police administration aims to curb.

In a statement which was signed by Superintendent Alexander Kwaku Obeing, the Director of Public Affairs, the service said “as the year 2021 draws to a close, the Ghana Police Service wishes to draw the attention of Ghanaians, especially religious groups, to the fact that whereas we have the right to religion, freedom of worship and free speech, all of these rights are subject to the respect for the rights and freedoms of others according to our laws.”

They statement added that, “over the years, communication of prophesies of harm, danger and death, by some religious leaders, have created tension and panic in the Ghanaian society and put the lives of many people in fear and danger.”

“We therefore wish to caution all Ghanaians, especially religious groups and leaders to be measured in their utterances, especially how they communicate prophecies, which may injure the right of others and the public interest. The Ghana Police Service wishes to place on record that the Police are not against prophecies; we acknowledge that we Ghanaians are a religious people who know, and believe in, the centrality of God in our lives,” the service further said.

The security service also hinted of possible arrest of people who publish or promote such contents from the preachers. “We want to caution that under Ghanaian law, it is a crime for a person to publish or reproduce a statement, rumour or report which is likely to cause fear and alarm to the public or to disturb the public peace, where that person has no evidence to prove that the statement, rumour or report is true.” The statement said, adding that, “a person found guilty under these laws could be liable to a term of imprisonment of up to five years.

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