Akyem Abuakwa Council of Zongo Chiefs demands fair scholarship opportunity for Zongo students

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Alhaji Umar Gariba Abubakar, vice president of the National Council of Zongo Chiefs, has advocated for a percentage quota system of educational scholarships under the Scholarship Scheme to be set aside for Muslims students from Zongo villages.

He pointed out that the quota system would make it easier for youngsters from Zongo villages to enroll in postsecondary institutions or pursue international studies.

The request was made in a brief side-by-side interview with journalist Kaakyire Kwasi Afari of Afeema FM on Saturday, November 5, 2022, at the Akyem Abuakwa Council of Zongo Chiefs’ third annual council meeting, which was held in Kyebi, in the Eastern region.

Inauguration of a 17-person appointed committee with the following executive members took place during the last annual meeting for 2022: Mussah Awudu, 1st vice chairman; Alhaji Abubakar Ibrahim, 2nd vice chair; and Chief Abubakar Gariba, 3rd vice chairman.

Alhaji Sanusi Mohammed, Ibrahim Bala Shaibu, who serves as secretary, Zakari Mohammed, who oversees the treasure, Ahmed Ali, who serves as financial secretary, Mohammed Bala Shaibu, who oversees public relations, and Alhaji Bature Iddrisu, who serves as patron are other members.

The remaining individuals are Osman Ibrahim Yaro, a member of the standing committee, Baba Sule, the welfare officer, Sarkin Bodua, Sarkin Akotia, Sarkin Moshi-Kyebi Alhaji Adamu Mohammed, Sarkin Samari-Nsawam, and Sarkin Tafo.

They also discussed about the Muslim Council, welfare and challenges confronting Muslims and people’s living in Zongos and finally suggested solutions to help address the phenomenon.

The newly installed Queen Mother for Akyem Abuakwa Council of Zongo Chiefs, Murjanaatu Mohammed also received an official certificate from the president into the Council.

The Council has announced 4th February, 2023 for thier first Council meeting next year.

Alhaji Umar Gariba Abubakar who doubles as president of Eastern region and Akyem Abuakwa Council of Zongo Chiefs admit that majority of students from Islamic schools are mostly denied from enjoying the scholarship system.

He observed that one of the challenges that posed a threat to educate Islamic students, especially in the Zongo communities was lack of Arabic teachers, which had resulted in students there hardly continuing their education beyond the Basic level.

According to Alhaji Umar Gariba Abubakar, told Kaakyire Kwasi Afari that, since some of the children from Zongos have potentials, in spite of their low scores, the Ghana scholarship Secretariat must have now had plans to restructure the scheme to prioritize Islamic education to emphasize both Islamic and Western education.

Meanwhile, he added that Muslim communities should help with recruitment of Arabic teachers in the various schools to enhance the teaching and learning of arabic.

In order to enhance the enrollment and retention of Muslim children in schools, the Eastern Regional Council of Zongo Chief’s President called for cooperation between the government on the one side and parents and Islamic community leaders on the other.

The Council of Zongo Chief mentioned the lavish festivities that are frequently observed in Zongo villages, but said that they are unable to teach and embed Islamic ideals in their young in order to advance Islam.

He thus urged all Zongo chiefs and leaders to make education a priority in all that they do by establishing the conditions that would allow kids in zongo villages to access education and develop their human capital.

Reacting on the suspected Terrorist threat on Ghana, Alhaji Abubakar Omar reiterates his call on all Muslim groups in the country to take a led in the “if you see something say something” campaign to expose suspected Terrorist groups in Zongo communities to prevent terrorist attacks.

According to him, Zongo communities should no longer be a place where violent-minded people would come and hire people to perpetrate their agenda because Muslim is a peaceful religion.

He claimed that labeling Zongo areas as dangerous and violent places to live has damaged their reputation.

He disputed the assertion, saying that Zongo villages were not as bad or violent as the majority of people had assumed, and that Islam did not advocate violence or murder but rather peace.

The 17-member Committee’s first vice chairman, Mussah Awudu, stated in an interview with journalist Kaakyire Kwasi Afari of Afeema FM that the Committee will faithfully carry out its task without discrimination.

He explained that they have a duty to inform their president about the problems that Muslims and Zongo residents in Akyem Abuakwa are facing, as well as any other supervision obligations.

Source: Ghanatodayonline.com/Kaakyire Kwasi Afari

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