THE STATE OF KAKAMEGA COUNTY AND NATION: A CALL TO ACTION

 PRESS STATEMENT

We, the religious leaders under the umbrella body of the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK), have met on this 29th day of February 2024 at  Salvation Army Kenya  West Territorial Headquarters, in Kakamega to deliberate and review the prevailing political and socioeconomic status of the county and nation, as well as reflect on the ongoing constitutional and democratic governance processes, with the view of providing pastoral guidance to the duty bearers and right holders for a successful and prosperous nation.

Our broad discussions are aimed at increasing accountability and transparency in service delivery, highlighting the challenges that our people face, strengthening the rule of law, and promoting peaceful coexistence and cohesion among all county residents. Our discussions have been guided by the words of the Holy Scripture in 1 Peter 2: 9 “But you are a chosen People, a royal Priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

In respect to the above, we humbly wish to share the following message:

1. The current Governor has implemented notable projects and programs, but we expect him to create key legacy projects for which he will be remembered. Furthermore, the quality of service delivery, particularly in the health sector, remains poor due to medical practitioners’ regular industrial strikes, and lack of drugs and essential equipment in most health facilities. Furthermore, the Governor’s commitment to improving ECD education by hiring more ECDE teachers is yet to be fully realized.

2. The County has seen an increase in political activity leading up to the 2027 elections, with many candidates expressing interest and starting early campaigns. We urge all politicians to refrain from early campaigns, which interfere with service delivery to County residents. We also urge residents of this great County of Kakamega to proceed with caution and use the few remaining years to evaluate the suitability of those running for various elective positions.

3. The Current Governor should complete all stalled projects that were legitimately started by the previous Governor I.e. Factories and level 4 Hospitals. We believe that this is a waste of taxpayers’ money and delayed service delivery.

4. Members of the County Government are using proxies to implement projects as contractors raising concerns about integrity and conflict of interest. We would like to remind the County Government and all other elected leaders that their core responsibility is to implement and oversee development projects in the county. The County Government should ensure adherence to the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act.

5. We have noted increased cases of insecurity in the County in places like Butere sub-county, Mumias West, Malava, Lurambi, and Lugari where residents are mugged, trucks robbed, houses broken into even early in the evening, and many other such related cases. The rise of violent youth groups and other militia groupings such as 42 Brothers among others who are harassing members of the public, extorting money from passers-by, and smoking bhang openly is a cause for concern. These cases need to be addressed urgently.

6. Gender-based violence has increased significantly, with high rates of adolescent pregnancies, defilement, rape, and incest. Kakamega County has received negative attention, affecting the county’s image and population. We urge civil society, county, and national governments, as well as parent and teacher organizations, to work together to combat this pandemic, which threatens future generations. On the same note, drug, alcohol, and substance abuse are on the rise, and it is having a negative impact on boy child. These social vices must be eradicated through collaborative efforts. We should stop pointing fingers and assigning blame.

7. At the national level, we note that the government has implemented tax measures that have become a burden for Kenyans. The tax measures have reduced household incomes, particularly among the employed and salaried population, pushing them deeper into poverty. We urge the government of H.E. President William Ruto to listen to the people’s plight and reduce the current burden.

Conclusion

We the religious leaders are the voice of reason in the county and we advocate for meaningful change in our society. We, the NCCK-affiliated leaders, call upon other religious bodies to unite and speak with courage on the social issues affecting our communities without fear or favor.  We remain open to a facilitative dialogue with our county and national leaders to find a lasting solution to the various issues that are of concern to Kakamega County and Kenya.

God Bless Kakamega County! God bless Kenya!

Signed on this 29th Day of February 2024 at Salvation Army Kenya West Territorial Headquarters Kakamega County by:

Reverend Benson Shisia

Outgoing NCCK Kakamega County CCC Chairperson

June 2024
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Contact Information

 

  • Address: 3rd Fr, Jumuia Place, Lenana road, Nairobi
  • Address: P. O. Box 45009 – 00100, Nairobi
  • Tel: 254202721249
  • Fax: 25420728748
  • Email: gsoffice@ncck.org
  • Website: http://www.ncck.org