Islam in Ghana
|Islam by country|
The introduction of Islam into ancient Ghana, was mainly the result of the commercial activities of North African Berber traders. Islam made its entry into the northern territories of modern Ghana around the fifteenth century. Most Muslims in Ghana are Sunni, following the Maliki version of Islamic law. According to Pew Forum on Religious & Publi life 51% are Sunni, 16% Ahmadi and 8% Shia while the majority of the rest do not associate themselves with a particular group, Sufism is not widespread in Ghana; the Tijaniyah and the Qadiriyah brotherhoods, however, are represented.
Despite tensions in the Middle East and North Africa since the mid-1970s, Muslims and Christians in Ghana have had excellent relations. Guided by the authority of the Muslim Representative Council, religious, social, and economic matters affecting Muslims have often been redressed through negotiations and the Muslim Council has also been responsible for arranging pilgrimages to Mecca for believers who can afford the journey.
In northern Ghana some metropolitan areas and cities, especially in areas with a significant Muslim population, there are now Islamic or Arabic schools offering primary, junior secondary and senior secondary education and however, most Muslim parents still send their children to state schools or private Christian schools and the more liberal of these schools show respect for the Muslim students among their ranks, for example by allowing Muslim prayers in their boarding houses or by opening or closing PTA meetings with a Muslim prayer and these developments are quite recent; this may explain the economic and technological gap between Muslims and non-Muslims. The official Ghana census reports 17.6% as being Muslims.
- Muslims cry foul over population figures. Amon Salo. Feb 2002
- International Religious Freedom Report Ghana 2006. US Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor