A CALL TO CALM, PATIENCE AND PEACE
August 13, 2022
We the religious leaders drawn from the National Council of Churches of Kenya and the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops are observing the electoral process our country is going through. We thank God that the process has so far been largely peaceful. As we draw towards the end, we are confident that the scripture in Ecclesiastes 7: 8 will be fulfilled:
The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride.
1. State of the Nation
We commend all Kenyans for the peaceful manner in which we participated in the polling on August 9, 2022, and for ensuring that the country has remained peaceful. The patience and hope Kenyans have exhibited is appreciated.
Nonetheless, we have seen a few instances of tension in some constituency and county tallying centers as well as at the national level, and we urge all actors to be peaceful and promote decorum in the process.
2. Verification of Presidential Results
The focus of the nation is now on the verification and tallying of the presidential poll results by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC). We are praying for the Commissioners and staff that they have grace and ability to complete the process in compliance with the law and sensitivity to the mood in the country.
Let us all as Kenyans remain calm and wait patiently as the IEBC verifies and tallies the results. Let us not allow anxiety to build in the nation, and no none should incite violence. Let us all heed the warning of God in Proverbs 6: 16 – 19
There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to Him: Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devices wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies, and a man who stirs up conflict in the community.
We commend the continued peaceful demeanor of the Presidential candidates, and urge them to encourage their supporters to remain peaceful and patient.
3. The Will of the People
We are very pleased to note the growing number of candidates who have publicly accepted the will of the people and conceded when they did not win the positions they were seeking. It is a beacon of hope that our democracy has matured.
We encourage the citizens to follow this trend of peacefully managing the disappointment that comes when your preferred candidate is not declared the winner. For candidates who feel dissatisfied, kindly seek justice in the courts of law.
4. Love Your Neighbour
We call upon all Kenyans to resume normal life. We must not allow fear and anxiety to build and cause elections to once again destroy the national peace and cohesion we have worked so hard to build. We especially urge all of us to desist from consuming and sending messages that provoke hate, fear and anxiety on social media. Let us seek to be a nation where we speak truth in love to each other, just as the Bible inspires us in Matthew 22: 39 – “Love your neighbor as yourself”.
We conclude by encouraging all of us to maintain peace, exercise patience, and communicate truth to one another. On our part, we as religious leaders remain committed to pray for peace and cohesion in our nation.
We invite all of Kenyans to join in prayer, individually and corporately, continually reciting the words of our National Anthem:
Oh God of all creation, bless this our land and nation, justice be our shield and defender
May we dwell in unity, peace and liberty, plenty be found within our borders
Signed on this 13th day of August 2022 at Donum Dei, Roussel House, Karen, Nairobi.
Rt Rev John Oballa Owaa
Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops
Rev Canon Chris Kinyanjui
National Council of Churches of Kenya