At a time Rwanda is busily closing churches and mosques in the country, the noise pollution debate in Ghana is taking a more techy drift.
The country’s Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation has had Muslims buzzing on social media over a proposal that Imams should consider using whatsapp and text messages to call the faithful to worship.
Prof Frimpong Boateng said in an interview: ‘From the mosque, why is it that time for prayer would not be transmitted with a text message or Whatsapp?
‘The Imam can send a Whatsapp message to everyone that the time for prayer is up, so they should appear,’ he added.
His views have elicited responses amongst others pointing him the direction of churches that make sustained noise over long periods of time.
Some Muslims also expressed worry about the Minister’s lack of grasp over the issue at hand. His views will even if workable apply to only Fajr (the dawn prayer) because there is human activity during the course of Zuhr, Asr, Maghrib and Ishae (remaining four daily prayers).
Again, during Fajr, the maximum duration for the call is five minutes, which period no one can claim noise pollution. Others, however posit that it was important to accept his views and duly educate him and others on the realities.
Ghana, one of West Africa’s most stable democracies has a large Muslim population even though records indicate it’s a Muslim majority nation. In between the two are African traditional worshippers.