|Statement from Provincial Synod of Anglican Church of Kenya
July 13, 2005
[CAPA - Kenya]
We, members of the 17th Ordinary Session of the Provincial Synod meeting here today 1-7-2005 at the All Saints Cathedral Hall, Nairobi wish to state the following:
We are grateful to the Lord that despite the happenings and changes in the country and the church at large, our Lord reigns. The church has continued with faith, hope and commitment.
We wish to recognise some positive gains and development that have been achieved by the Narc government since it came to power.
To mention just a few we note with appreciation the national free primary education restoration of some order in the public transport sector the “radical” surgery in the judiciary, the 4.3% growth in our economy the Sh 100 million pool in development funds to the constituency.
We cannot forget the progress made in the East African regionalisation process, opening of democratic space and establishment of a government spokesman. Petty, tribal political patronage and self-aggrandisement are however eclipsing these gains by leaders. Much time and energy is spent on throwing barbs at each other instead of addressing real issues facing the country.
The clarion call for a working nation is slowly turning into a wrangling, bickering leadership. We urge the leaders to stop fighting and concentrate on serving wananchi. If “the leadership limps, the flock will not reach the green pastures.”
Constituency Development Funds
The disbursement of about Sh 100 million in Constituency, Bursary, HIV/Aids and Road funds gives the electorate the opportunity to get involved in identification, appraisal, prioritisation, implementation monitoring and evaluation of projects. The administration and management of these funds should be devoid of patronage, nepotism and cronyism. Handpicking members will kill the spirit of checks and balances and rob these committees of credibility. We call upon the government to set up funds for civic education on the usage of the funds. We need credible men of integrity in the committees.
Kenyans need secure homes, conducive working environment and secure surroundings at work place to bring up their children. The culture of violence, abuse of human rights, excessive brutality, rape, car jacking and other vices are giving the country a bad name. This affects tourism investment. While we appreciate the recent incentives to improve and arm the law enforcement offices, the country is ranked among the most insecure in the world.
Many lives of innocent, helpless and indefensible Kenyans are lost daily. Others are displaced in simmering political, social and cultural upheavals while unwarranted clashes have left death and destruction. Cattle-rustling and inter-tribal feuds are rampant.
We wish to condemn the selling of illicit brews laced with methanol which have killed 50 people in Ukambani area and other areas. We are concerned that the brews, which originated from Naivasha, passed undetected by our hawk-eyed security personnel. We wonder whether anyone was compromised to allow the passage of these deadly concoctions.
The issue of land remains emotive today. Piecemeal resettlement has not and will not solve the broader national crisis either. Thousands of innocent Wananchi have been evicted and displaced. Whether in Mau forest, Mai Mahiu, Kajiado, Mombasa or other areas, their plight touches the core of our hearts. Excessive force has been used in evicting these people.
We appeal to the government to exercise restraint and be humane in evicting these now landless people. Failure to have a clear law policy has exacerbated the matter. We urge the government to enforce the Ndungu Commission land report.
The Synod reiterates that abortion is an illegal act against humanity, immoral, shameful and should not be legalized.
We totally oppose any move to legalize it. We stand in solidarity with persons and organizations that are out to defend the sanctity of life as God intended it to be.
We refer to the book of Jeremiah 1:5 “I knew you before you were formed within your mother’s womb.” And Psalms 139:13 to 14 “You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”
Health is a critical factor in the economic growth and development of any country. We note the challenges facing this sector and the government’s efforts to address them. The infrastructure and equipment in many public hospitals are however rundown and essential drugs and medical supplied are inadequate.
The government should entrench policies that promote community health services including church based hospitals and clinics. Acquisition of ARVs for people affected by HIV/Aids should be streamlined to make them affordable for the majority poor. We support the banning of beer and cigarette advertisements.
This synod is concerned about high level corruption within the ranks of the Narc government which came to a platform of zero tolerance. This vice has dented the government image and few people will now believe its seriousness and commitment to fighting graft. The fact that some of the corrupt deals were initiated by the former regimes cannot be an excuse for the current government to supervise conclusion of wrongful transactions.
This synod urges President to act urgently, firmly, decisively to sack and prosecute those involved in graft.
There should not be any “sacred cows” or protection of a clique of trusted cronies. Nobody should deem themselves indispensable or untouchable as the interests of this country come first before those of an individual.
Corruption whether petty, grand or looting, has immensely contributed to the prevailing widening gap between the rich and the poor. It is affecting foreign investments.
Numerous public institutions particularly in the crucial agricultural sector have collapsed due to siphoning of money by corrupt persons given responsibility to superintend over them. The lives of ordinary Kenyans have been affected since agriculture is the mainstay of many families.
Other sectors are not spared either. Some Government departments are perceived as dens of corruption where services may only be availed on parting with a bribe.
Sadly, corruption has been translated into a culture that tears at the fabric of society. Faced with corruption, an ordinary Kenyan will enthusiastically embrace it or, at best, succumb to it in sheer desperation and despondency with the ‘consoling’ remark that ’It is the only thing that works.’