Ghana: “My religious faith, an integral part of my legal and political vocation” – President Akufo-Addo
The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo said his faith in God as a Christian shaped his professional life as a lawyer and politician, which greatly influenced his vision for the transformation of Ghana and of Africa.
During the inaugural lecture on Africa given by the Museum of the Bible in Washington, USA, President Akufo-Addo revealed that the essential part of his Christian upbringing that had instilled in him was that Christianity was a way of life, a daily experience and meant much more than going to church, which was obligatory in the Ofori-Atta and Akufo-Addo homes.
“My own parents, as you can imagine, were devout Presbyterians. I was baptized a Presbyterian and became an Anglican, despite my parents’ vehement protests, following the secondary school I attended in England. Let’s just say I fell in love with the rituals, daily Matins and Vespers, and the extra Sunday Eucharist, which were constant features of my four-year school stay at Lancing,” he recalls.
These, he says, have thoughtfully influenced his practice as a lawyer and politician.
He thus transmitted in his lecture that, “often in the practice of law, things are not as clear cut as they seem or as one would wish. There would be times when no experience or intellectual rigor would prepare you On such occasions it helps to be able to look back on your faith and perhaps the sound of your mother singing that ancient hymn: “Who is on the side of the Lord? It helps to be on the side of the Lord when you claim to seek or arbitrate justice among humans. »
Quoting passages from Sir Walter Beasant’s legal novel, “The Ivory Gate”, in which the author portrays a most optimistic view of a lawyer in refreshing contrast to how lawyers are typically portrayed in other books, he agrees with Sir Beasant’s quote that “the lawyer knows more than a Roman Catholic priest and takes on greater responsibilities. It certainly helps to be a Christian and to have an anchor that you stabilizes as you maneuver through the turbulent everyday life that is legal practice.
On his political trajectory, President Akufo-Addo said, the story of my struggles to become President of my country is well known. My experiences have been a testimony to the love of God and a vindication of the words of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, in the Gospel according to Saint Matthew, chapter 19 verse 26, which says “to man it is impossible , but with God everything is possible”.
Recounting, he said, “It took me three tries between 2008 and 2016 to get elected. At that time, the popular slogans of “Akufo-Addo cannot be president”, “God does not want Akufo-Addo to be president”, “Akufo-Addo is short, and does not have the build to being president “had become so common, you had to be firmly rooted in your faith to have had the courage to persist”.
Emphasizing his true faith, President Akufo-Addo told the gathering that as a result, “I have committed this third election campaign to God and indicated to the people of Ghana that ‘the battle is with the Lord.’ By the grace of God, I won a famous victory over an incumbent president by a margin of nearly a million votes, the largest margin of victory in two decades. And, by the same Grace, I was re-elected in the December 2020 elections, and I am now in my second and final presidential term.