Protect Lives and Livelihoods

PROTECT LIVES AND LIVELIHOODS

PRESS STATEMENT

Preamble

The religious leaders drawn from Nakuru, Baringo, Bomet, Narok, Kericho and Samburu counties have led a forum here at ACK St. Luke’s Church, Narok, today on 29th February 2024 to reflect on the state of the South Rift region and the Nation at large. This was a joint forum with key religious leaders from NCCK, SUPKEM Narok Chapter and KCCB Ngong Diocese.

The Religious Leaders have taken a deep reflection on the regional and national issues and we are deeply concerned by the worrying state of affairs. This implies there is a great need for urgent remedial actions and radical changes. 

While reflecting on the Holy Books, Hebrews 12: 14;

“Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be Holy; without holiness, no one will see the Lord”

Therefore, we humbly wish to share three key messages and recommendations thereof, particularly with all political leaders, Arms of the Government and Kenyans;

  1. Honest Commitment to End the Spiralling Insecurity in the Region

The insecurity status is quite worrying and intriguing in Baringo, and Samburu Counties as well as the relapse of inter-communities clashes in Narok and Kericho Counties. We are deeply concerned since the violence has persisted and is continuing despite the security interventions that have been put in place in the areas.

It is so bad to the extent that an elected leader can be killed by bandits in a region under government security operations since February 2023. The insecurity status is characterized by sporadic banditry attacks, killings of innocent lives, vandalism of key infrastructure e.g. schools, livestock theft, inter-clan wars, and inter-community clashes. These criminal activities have an irreversible impact on Kenyans; unnecessary loss of innocent lives, disruption of livelihoods, displacement and migration of residents, loss of livestock, and disruption of education of our children. It is disheartening to note that this happening yet we say we the nation is peaceful.

Recognizing that security is a pre-requisite of peace, cohesion, and tolerance, we make the following specific recommendations:

  • a. We urge the government to take stern action against politicians and individuals having a hand in violence either directly or indirectly.
  • Strengthen community policing; revamp and empower Peace Committees’ Structures to promote peace and cohesion. The government to engage the church leaders in ethnic dialogue forum initiatives.
  • Promote public-police trust for enhanced early warning and intelligence sharing at the community level

2. Uphold the Constitution of Kenya and the Rule of Law

Dear all, the Rule of Law has been under great threat characterized by open impunity, mobilization of groups, and attack on some institutions by some leaders. We are particularly alarmed at the widening gap in the three arms of government relationships. In the Constitution of Kenya, the Executive, the Legislature, and the Judiciary were created separately to provide checks and balances to ensure a just society. Nakuru County is a good scenario case where there is open disregard for the court rulings by the National Police Service and political leaders in power. We plead with all leaders, institutions, and Kenyans to protect, adhere and promote the Constitution and Laws of Kenya.

3. Address the High Cost of Living, Accelerate the Delivery of Quality Services, and End Corruption

This is our biggest cry and demand to HE The President, the National and Senate Parliaments; that the most urgent concern of the people of Kenya is to lower the skyrocketing cost of living amidst other socio-economic and political challenges. The soaring cost of commodities coupled with dwindling expendable income, has pushed more Kenyans below the poverty line leading to a lot of suffering. The collapse of businesses, both big and small, has exponentially raised unemployment levels in the country. This situation is unsustainable regardless of any macro-level economic measures being put in place.

To remedy this situation, we strongly recommend a reprieve for the people by lowering taxes and freezing the increment of statutory deductions. Instead, we urge measures to promote the growth of export-oriented businesses. This will earn the nation the much-needed foreign exchange and also increase tax income without unnecessarily aggravating the people.

We also call for all county governments in the region to accelerate the delivery of quality service and prioritize community-felt needs for sustainable development. It is intriguing to hear from the Auditor General reports that some County Governments have zero development reports, others have increased revenue with very minimal or zero development while some recorded declined revenue collection.

As patriotic Citizens, we must have an honest fight against corruption. Corruption compounded by other issues such as the high cost of living, and high taxation, poor service delivery erodes the confidence of the public and demotivates their trust in political leadership and government institutions. We urge an honest total war against corruption through the prosecution of any persons who have been involved in any irregular processes to misappropriate state resources for their selfish interests. We highly recommend the ODPP to desist from any other attempts to withdraw corruption cases– it is not right and it is unfair to the People of Kenya. We urge for recall of the dropped corruption criminal cases to follow the due courts’ processes.

Conclusion

In conclusion, we continue to pray for our dear Nation; for Unity, Prosperity, and Resilience to the global dynamics.

We condole with the family of the late Hon. Paul Leshimpiro and all families that have lost their loved ones in the banditry-prone areas. We are taking time to pray for the region to attain peace and the nation at large and we are also inviting all Kenyans to join hands in the same.

 This is our message of hope to all Kenyans to appreciate and protect democracy, live in harmony and tolerate each other, and persevere for a better today and tomorrow.

God bless us all.

Signed on this 29th day of February 2024 at ACK St. Luke’s Church, Narok by:

Rt. Rev. Ernest Ng’eno

NCCK South Rift Regional Chairman

Ali Juma Ramadhan

Chairman, SUPKEM Narok County Chapter

Fr. John Nderitu

Chairman, KCCB/CJPD Ngong Diocese

April 2024
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