Sheikh Mohamed Kassim
Mohammed Kassim is the director of the Academic Administration Department at the Islamic University College, Ghana, where he served as the head of religious studies department for the 2012/2013 academic year. He also served as a lecturer in the religious studies department from 2009 after the completion of his MPhil programme in the study of religions at the University of Ghana, Legon. As a lecturer, he teaches Islam and ecumenism, family law, and the study of Hadith.
Kassim’s interest is to propose measures for culture and religious action aimed at increasing understanding and respect for religious diversity among people of different religious background in Ghana. Because of this interest, for the past decade, he has engaged in inter- and intra-religious dialogue. He has also participated in several seminars, workshops and training programmes on inter- and intra-religious dialogue.
He is the regular host of Understanding Islam, a talk show on a local radio station in Accra, Ghana (Marhaba FM (99.3 FM)) and he has been a regular guest on radio and television discussions and presentations on various aspects and topics on Islam and religious pluralism. Through these discussions, he is able to inform his students and the other audiences about the need for religious pluralism. Because of his engagements and action plan, Kassim identifies with the motto, “Unity in Diversity.”
Interreligious Activities and Initiatives
IRD: THE EFFICIENT TOOL FOR RELIGIOUS LEADERS IN PREVENTING HATE SPEECH AND VIOLENT EXTREMISM
The initiative aims to build the capacity of religious leaders and the youth to bridge communities, lead action and prevent hate speech through dialogue. Thus, the project aims at combating hate speech by mobilizing religious leaders and young people to speak up and to establish a balanced fundamental rights and principles, including the defense of human dignity and freedom of expression which is devoid of defamation of character .
The project therefore seeks to reduce the acceptance of hate speech through human rights education and awareness-creation and youth participation. It will provide the religious leaders and youth with efficient tools to combat and ultimately prevent violent extremism.
Forty (40) participants, are expected to attend the workshop. Invitation will be extended to some renowned experts in the field of IRD and hate speech. The experts present their researched papers at the workshop and the participants will have a chance to interact with them. This would be followed by a series of activities on IRD and combating hate speech trainings. This will trigger informed dialogue in an effort to explore together countering measures for hate speech and violent extremism.
ADVANCING CITIZEN’S SECURITY THROUGH COUNTERING VIOLENT EXTREMISM AND SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF PEACE THROUGH DIALOGUE
The initiative aims to build the capacity of religious leaders to bridge communities, lead action and prevent violent extremism through dialogue. Thus, this initiative will engage with religious actors and academics in efforts to counter violent extremism. Drawing on insights from recent policy discussions, and academic activities, it will offer practical guidelines through discussions to equip religious actors with IRD strategies to address the challenge.
Fifty (50) participants, are expected to attend the workshop. The selection process of participants would also be mindful of denominations that exist among the religious groupings in order to ensure a balanced representation. The participant will go under intensive IRD training for two days. The first day would comprise of a preliminary session where all the participants are expected to attend. Invitation will be extended to some renowned experts in the field of IRD. The experts will be asked to present their researched papers at the workshop and the participants will have a chance to interact with them. This would be followed by a series activities on IRD trainings.
Series of IRD trainings would continue in the second day and it would be climaxed with a roundtable discussion. This will trigger informed dialogue in an effort to explore together countering measures for violent extremism.