To transform lives through ecumenism, capacity building, advocacy and service delivery.
One Church; United in Faith and Mission Witnessing to Jesus Christ and Transforming Lives.
In pursuing its Christian calling, the Council shall uphold:
The clergy and community elders have been challenged to collaborate in their efforts to foster peace and national cohesion ahead of next year’s General Election.
Speaking in Kakamega County, the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK) General Secretary Reverend Canon Peter Karanja said that a joint engagement between the two teams of leaders will enable them identify possible triggers of violence and jointly devise strategies to diffuse them.
Canon Karanja who was accompanied by his deputy Dr. Nelson Makanda and a host of Council staff, observed that the stakes in next year’s elections were quite high, hence the need to protect the wellbeing of communities against short-term political ambitions and interests that may culminate into violence. He was addressing a joint of Luhya Council of Elders and the clergy drawn from all the Luhya sub-tribes. “Political party primaries are always shambolic and violence could actually erupt as there is no party hopping. It is therefore important to identify the ones who can start violence and engage them in good time so as to preempt the violence,” observed Canon Karanja.
He emphasized the need for communities to identify, concretize and create an understanding about their interests as these would form the basis for engaging political leaders.
Speaking during the same forum, Dr Makanda underscored NCCK’s commitment to champion and encourage communities to engage in activities that promote economic empowerment and issue based politics. “NCCK is concerned about the forthcoming elections. Our desire is to engage communities so that elections are as peaceful as possible,” said Dr. Makanda.
During the meeting, the elders and clergy reviewed the economic and socio-political concerns in view of the peace imperative in the lead up to 2017 elections. They then agreed upon various actions and initiatives they will engage in to actualize the forum’s deliberations (Click here to see the resolutions).
1. Support strengthening of Clan / Community Councils of Elders
Councils of Elders play a key role in the establishment and sustenance of peaceful relations between communities. It is therefore of great importance that all people, including the clergy, support the strengthening of the Councils of Elders as they are key pillars of society. These Councils of Elders will include women and youth.
2. Sensitize the People
We will use different forums including pulpit exchanges to sensitize the people regarding the importance of mutually beneficial relationships between different communities.
3. Intra and Inter Ethnic Dialogue
We will participate in and where necessary initiate intra and inter-ethnic dialogue with a goal of enabling our communities to identify their interests and collaborative means of achieving them.
4. Pursue Involvement of All Communities
We will advocate for and promote equal involvement of all communities in matters of this county including political leadership. We will therefore support negotiated democracy where feasible so that all communities will have a strong sense of ownership and belonging in the county. This will also lead to a reduction of the hate speech that has been witnessed in the past.
5. Economic Empowerment of the community
We resolve to deal with fear and apathy among our people with regards to borrowing loans for purposes of economic development.
6. Land Use
We appreciate God for giving us sufficient arable land and favorable climate perfect for farming. We will ensure the land we have is put into proper use for economic development.
7. Pursuit of the Luhya Political Interests
Our community is ranked the second largest community in Kenya with a growth rate of up to 3.7% per annum and 18 sub-tribes. We are the most democratic community among all others in Kenya however this has led to disunity amongst the sub-tribes hence working against our bid to have one of our own ascending into the top most leadership of this country. We therefore resolve to use our numerical strength to consolidate our votes into one basket and use that to negotiate for our political interests. On the same note we will endeavor to ensure our people register as voters.
8. Put up a Joint Sub Committee of the Clergy and Elders
We resolve to establish a joint subcommittee of the clergy and elders with five members from each side representing each of the counties in the region. Each side will consult in selecting the five representatives. The Elders Forum secretary Mr.Ludava and NCCK regional chair are charged with coordinating this process. They will report back on the way forward in two weeks’ time. The Committee will be in charge of deliberating on issues affecting the community and facilitate meetings of the two groups from time to time. The Committee will also look into facilitating a meeting for the clergy, elders and the politicians.