Ghana Muslims Urged to Register Marriages

OnIslam & News Agencies

Ghana Muslims Urged to Register Marriages
The new campaign, led by UMCF in Ghana, was launched to encourage Muslims to register their marriages.

ACCRA – An interfaith Ghanaian forum has launched a new campaign to educate Muslims on the marriage acts, hoping to ensure that Muslim marriages are registered properly in the West African country.

“It has created a situation where the various Islamic groupings issues different marriage certificate which is not recognized by the state," Alhaji Ahmed Nii Nortey, Executive Director of the United Muslim Christian Forum (UMCF), told the Ghana News Agency on Tuesday, December 3.

The new campaign, led by UMCF in Ghana, was launched to encourage Muslims to register their marriages to conform with the requirements of the Marriages Act (1984 – 1985) – the Mohammendans Ordinance (CAP 129).

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The problem erupted after discovering that CAP 129 was not being implemented by the state through the Registrar Generals Department (RGD) due to lack of a register and licensed Imams to officiate such marriages.

Nortey added the provisions for registration in the Ordinance were not known to many Muslims.

UMCF executive director has argued that the 'regularization' of the Islamic marriage would counter future marital disputes.

Along with the Public awareness campaign, UMCF will be working with proper legislative, traditional and Islamic bodies to hire licensed Imams to undertake the marriage through the RGD.

The forum would also communicate with the RGD to monitor the establishment of the Islamic marriage desk and enforcing CAP 129.

Urging all Islamic organizations to back the forum's initiative, Alhaji Nii Nortey said that the campaign must be supported to ensure "our marriages are protected.”

Last July, a governmental proposal to increase marital age for women in Ghana from 18 to 23 was vehemently criticized by Muslim organizations.

They deemed it as opening the door to problems related to pre-marital sex and abortion which contradicts with the Islamic laws.

Marriage in Islam is of utmost importance as it is upon the lawful union of a man and a woman that society grows strong and that moral is preserved.

In Islam it is not permissible for the guardian to compel the one under his guardianship to marry someone she does not desire to marry.

Rather, it is necessary to seek her consent and permission.

According to CIA factbook, Ghana is home to a Muslim population estimated by 17.6% of the country’s 25 million.

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