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Religious leaders should work with the government

Religious leaders should work with the government

TANZANIA has enjoyed cooperation between the government and different religious leaders and that situation should be cemented by both parties.

The government remains secular, whereby the state is to officially remain neutral in matters of religion, supporting neither religion nor irreligion.

A secular state treats all its citizens equally regardless of religion, and avoids preferential treatment for a citizen based on their religious beliefs, affiliation or lack of either over those with other profiles.

But the government has been working with religious leaders who are always close to the mass and are listened so much during their sermons in the worship houses, be they churches or mosques.

On Friday, President Samia Suluhu Hassan hailed religious leaders for their cooperation with the government in maintaining national peace, unity and tranquillity for national development.

She also reiterated the government's commitment to continue cooperating with religious institutions in ensuring all their social development projects are implemented and completed on time.

The president made the statement in Bukoba municipality, Kagera region during an event to inaugurate the Jami'ulIstiqaama Mosque, which was built by the Istiqaama Foundation by support from the government of Oman.

There is no doubt that religious institutions have a greater role in shaping behaviour of individuals to become good citizens for national development.

Religious leaders, therefore, should continue using prayer houses in building the nation with a fear of God, well-mannered citizens who uphold national peace, unity and harmony.

A secular, open, and pluralistic society where government does not ascribe to one worldview over another is a right to which every Tanzanian is entitled as guaranteed in the Constitution.

This should protect the assertively atheistic just as it now protects the devoutly faithful. Free exercise rarely requires the intervention of legislators.

When they do intervene, it tends to result in special rights for the religious that discriminate against the nonreligious.

Since the era of the First Phase Government up to the present Sixth Phase Government it has been witnessed how the government keeps working together with religious institutions undertaking different social service projects that are beneficial to the believers and Tanzanians at large.

Istiqaama foundation should also be hailed for implementing the project at higher standards, hence setting an example for others. There are several projects that are being undertaken by the institution, and behold are of high quality.

Religious leaders should also continue reminding and emphasizing to their followers on the importance of participating in the upcoming Population and Housing Census to be held on August 23 this year.

Believers and Tanzanians at large should uphold a sense of humanity and respect each other as per the teachings.

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Author: EDITOR

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