It may also be difficult to conclude that gender issues raised within the Muslim community in Ghana come up solely because of Islam, as there are other influences on Muslims in the community.I will also assess the role of the Muslim woman to determine whether it has changed drastically.
The two combined are therefore interesting topical issues that arouse excitement, passion, and from different quarters with varying degrees of responses.
According to Ghada Karmi, "the whole matter is so charged with emotions and paranoia that to attempt a cool evaluation of exactly what are the rights of women under Islam is no easy matter." (1) While the Western notion of feminism has made an intrusion into the debate, Muslims have also complicated the picture by providing different categories of interpretation of the Quranic verses on women.
I will also highlight the Islamic understanding of leadership.
This is necessary in view of the fact that the basis of our discourse will necessarily be informed and guided by what Muslims in general and especially the Muslim woman understands her role in Islam to be.
Concept of leadership According to Khurram Murad as cited in Beekun and Badawi, (2) leadership is the ability to see beyond assumed boundaries and come up with solutions or paths that few can visualize.
21% of girls in Ghana are married before they are 18 , but rates can be as high as 39% in the northern part of the country .Adolescent pregnancy is also a driver and consequence of child marriage.14% of girls aged 15-19 in Ghana have begun having children . 41.2% of girls from the poorest families are married before 18, as opposed to only 11.5% of girls from the richest families .For example, in 2000 when a national conference was held by the Federation of Muslim Women's Associations in Ghana (FOMWAG) in Ho, some Ahl us Sunna wal Jamat women literally wanted to drive away men who were peeping through the windows because this was unacceptable to them.In view of this, I shall make general comments and make cross-references to situations in other communities when appropriate.The high bride price received for young girls in Ghana means that families often see child marriage as a survival strategy.