Liberian Muslim cleric, Sheik Omaru Kamara, says call for the Christianization of Liberia is an attempt to discriminate among the country’s religious groupings.
Addressing the House of Representatives’ Committee on Good Governance, Elections, Inauguration and Judiciary at the Capitol Building Wednesday, February 24 in a final public hearing on several propositions advanced by Liberians for constitutional amendments, Sheik Kamara said the idea of making Liberia a Christian state, as being proposed is only intended to divide the peace loving people of the country.
“The peace and stability that we all are enjoying should not be tempered with the idea of making our nation a Christian state because it does not help us; instead, there are more harms then good,” he said. According to the Islamic clergy, the passage of such proposition will seriously undermine peace and stability here, reminding that Muslims, Christians and other religious groupings have co-existed since the foundation of Liberia.
He said legalizing Christianity will not positively change anything, but promote animosity, especially between Christians and Muslims. Commenting on behalf of the Christian community, Rev. Arnold Hill said rather than legislation, Liberia should continue to exist as a Christian nation.
According to him, a Christian State is different from a Christian nation, explaining the former involves everything about governance of the state, appointment, disallowing the practice of other faiths and spending state resources exclusively on church-related issues, while the latter means dedicating the physical geographical space of the country to God.
Rev. Hill said the Christian community is not against any religion, but Christians are bitter with the inception in the 1986 Constitution of Liberia, which states that ‘Liberia is secular state’. He defines secular as a country without God Almighty, suggesting that Liberia is poor because of the indication that it does not hold divine connection.
Rev. Hill, who was accompanied to the hearings by other church leaders, said it will be of interest and best choice for the committee and plenary to allow Christian nation proposition remain for national referendum in 2017.
A National Constitution Review Conference held in Gbarnga, Bong County in April 2015 produced 25 propositions key among them, legislating Christianity, reduction of tenure of the President from six to four years, Senators from nine to six years, members of the House of Representatives from six to four years, and women empowerment.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor-Edited by Jonathan Browne