Public Participation, the Bedrock of Peace and Prosperity
December 8, 2022
Public Participation, the Bedrock of Peace and Prosperity
1 Chronicles 13: 4
The whole assembly agreed to do this, because it seemed right to all the people.
The Executive Committee of the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK) has held a meeting here at Jumuia Conference and Country Home, Limuru, to transact statutory business and reflect on matters of national concern.
The meeting reflected on the centrality of participation of all people in matters of concern to the community, recognizing that all people are made in the image of God and therefore each has a critical role to play.
Message to All Kenyans
We take this moment to thank all Kenyans for the peaceful and calm manner we have acted before, during and after the 2022 General Elections. The decision we each made individually to not engage in violence is what preserved our nation. We urge you to continue holding onto this resolution moving into the future, so that we be a nation of peacemakers just as the Bible encourages us in Romans 12: 18
… as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
Moving forward, we now call upon you to commit to participate in governance and decision making processes at the local, county and national levels. Always remember that as provided for in the Constitution of Kenya 2010, you have a right to contribute to the making of decisions that affect your life. Let us adopt the mantra of “nothing about us without us”.
Towards this, take time to attend and contribute during public participation forums organized by different government and non-state actors, and especially raise your voices to hold leaders accountable in the execution of their mandates. In this way, we will each play a part in addressing the issues that are pressing on us including high cost of living, drought and famine, and insecurity.
Message to Elected and Appointed Leaders
Dear Leaders, you have received a commission from God and the people of Kenya to hold that office. We urge you to uphold integrity, making a firm commitment to serve all Kenyans with equity, justice and fairness. Of note is the need to complete all the projects initiated by previous administrations before you initiate new ones. Do not use that position to plunder public resources so as to enrich yourself, always remembering that God will call you to account for the responsibility laid upon you. It will do you well to take to heart the inspiration given in Colossians 3: 23 – 24
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward.
Message to the Judiciary
As provided for in the Constitution of Kenya, the Judiciary resolves disputes. We urge you to ensure that justice is done and seen to be done. Always remember the words of Ecclesiastes 8: 11
When the sentence for a crime is not quickly carried out, the hearts of the people are filled with schemes to do wrong.
Message to the Opposition
Dear Brothers and Sisters, we commend you for the way you engaged in the 2022 General Election cycle. You contributed to the peace and calm the nation experienced. We recognize that democracy safeguards alternative voices and opinions, and urge you to remain vigilant, visible and vocal so as to provide checks and balances to the government. As you did during the elections, we encourage you to continue promoting peace and national cohesion.
Message to His Excellency the President
Your Excellency, we congratulate you on assuming office as the President of the Republic of Kenya. This is a huge mandate and responsibility God and the people of Kenya have laid on your shoulders.
As the leader of the people of Kenya, we encourage you to progress the culture of peace and national cohesion, protecting the equality of all Kenyans. We urge you to rise above the fray to be the father of the nation and symbol of national unity. May you always be inspired by the wisdom of Proverbs 29: 14
If a king judges the poor with fairness, his throne will always be secure.
Your Excellency, the stability and prosperity of Kenya will always depend on the extent to which justice, fairness and inclusion are exercised. We especially call for fairness and equity in distribution of resources and appointments in government to reflect the face of Kenya.
In this regard, we urge you to promote wholesome public participation on matters affecting the people. We especially call to your attention the current discourse regarding Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in which Kenyans have expressed different opinions. It will be prudent to avoid appearance of leadership by decree, and suspend the importation of GMOs until there are adequate consultations across the country. In the meantime, let us intensify adoption of alternative measures to ensure the food security of all Kenyans.
Similarly, on the emerging need for transition at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), we urge you to ensure that the appointment of the Selection Panel and the selection process itself are consultative, inclusive and protect the independence of the Commission.
Dear Brothers and Sisters, we conclude by recalling the words we always sing in our National Anthem:
Let all with one accord, in common bond united; Build this our nation together
And the glory of Kenya, the fruit of our labour, fill every heart with thanksgiving
We will build in one accord only when we engage in meaningful public participation in governance and decision making processes. Do not leave others to make decisions about your life without your input.
May God enable us all to play our part in ensuring peace for a better tomorrow.
We now wish you all a Christ-filled Christmas and a Blessed New Year 2023.
Signed on this 8th day of December 2022 at Jumuia Conference and Country Home, Limuru
Archbishop Dr Timothy Ndambuki
Rev Canon Chris Kinyanjui