One-man faiths forearmed with loudspeakers proliferate in Ghanas fast-growing capital. But as the city gets noisier, inhabitants are fighting back
” If you disobey the laws of God, the serpent will bite you. Satan will ingest you ,” wails Apostle Michael Sarfo at a major road intersection in Ghana’s capital, Accra. He preaches for five hours every weekday morning, with a load of talkers amplifying his evangelism. Passersby stop to receive devotions and blessings, some tossing their coin presents from moving cars.
In Accra, you are never far from religious speeches. According to one estimate, there are approximately 10 religions per sq km, and open-air preaching, whether on modes of public transport, in bus terminals or at street intersections, is commonplace.
The population of Greater Accra was about 4 million in 2010, but the city’s rapid growth means that number is expected to reach nearly 10 million by 2037. And as the population increases and the city gets noisier, residents are becoming more willing to fight back- resulting in a rise in noise complaints.
Sarfo has been preaching at this intersection with his speaker system for the past four years. He says he used to be a lot louder but lowered his ranks after beings deplored. He guesses those who complain about the noise are not true Christians.