, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 6 – President Mwai Kibaki has appealed to Kenyans to embrace tolerance and kindness to one another regardless of their individual political, religious or ideological inclinations.
Addressing a congregation during celebrations to mark the Golden Jubilee for Christ is the Answer Ministries at the Nyayo National Stadium, President Kibaki asserted that God had clearly shown that He has a special purpose for the country and urged Kenyans to remain steadfastly united.
The President urged both wananchi and leaders to be clear and remain genuine on what they want the country to achieve for the sake of the current and future generations.
President Kibaki said: “Accept one another regardless of your individual religious, political or ideological affiliations. Be tolerant and kind to each other because that is the purpose God has for this nation.”
During the occasion the President challenged local churches to fully integrate Kenyans in commercial and industrial activities in order to create enough jobs for the unemployed.
He affirmed that the Church was a partner in provision of technical and business training as well as establishment of small and medium enterprises to benefit Kenyans.
The President commended the church for complementing Government efforts in provision of higher education and creation of high calibre workforce for the country’s development.
He challenged the Nairobi Pentecostal Church to equip and develop the Pan African Christian University, which it sponsors, into a fully-fledged university participating in research and development of skills necessary to exploit the vast natural resources in Africa for the benefit of its people.
“Thus, the Government sees the church as a complementary partner in the provision of education, health, and other social services essential for development. We appreciate the realisation that spiritual enrichment alone is not enough. Provision of basic services by the Government, the church, the community and private sector is essential for faster improvement of the welfare of human life in Kenya, in Africa, and throughout the world,” remarked the President.
The Head of State reiterated that both the Government and the Church need to work closely to promote social dialogue, political tolerance and national cohesion for the common good of the nation.
The President said: “This is an example of what we mean when we call on all religious, political and social organisations to come forward and help create a just society with a national sense of purpose.”
President Kibaki noted that deliberate efforts must particularly be made to ensure that mutual respect, understanding and cooperation become the cornerstones on which the country’s national heritage is anchored on.
He expressed confidence that faith based organisations including the Christ is the Answer Ministries would rise up to the challenge of being instruments of peace and hope for the country.
The Head of State noted that the Government firmly believed that through the Vision 2030 the country would achieve social cohesion, equitable socio-economic and political development in a secure environment for all its citizens.
The President observed: “I take this opportunity to invite religious organizations to partner with the government in building strong social and spiritual foundation for prosperous and peaceful country.”
President Kibaki affirmed that the country had made tremendous efforts in building a vibrant economy and realisation of social justice despite various challenges afflicting the nation, which he said affected other countries too.
He cited rain failure leading to prolonged drought, in most parts of the country, as the most serious challenge facing the nation currently due to resultant hunger and human suffering.
The Head of State, however, assured Kenyans that the Government had instituted both short and long term measures to address the challenge and particularly reduce the reliance on rain fed agriculture.
He reassured, “We are also focused on implementing long term measures that will see a reduction in reliance on rain-fed agriculture. In particular, we have embarked on developing a nationwide irrigated agriculture, while also opening new opportunities in non-agricultural economic sectors to ensure our people realize growing incomes and enjoy decent standards of living.”
Urging Kenyans to continue praying for the nation as the Government makes efforts to secure the interests of the future generations, the President commended the Church and its founders for the tremendous achievements it has realized since its inception in 1959 and reaffirmed the Government’s recognition of the church’s foundation laid by the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada
He also appreciated that rich legacy created by the church and its remarkable contribution towards the growth of Christianity in the country.
President Kibaki said, “In your 50 years of existence you have created a rich heritage for the church and greatly contributed to the growth of Christianity in our country. Worth mentioning is the increase in your ministries through Education Academies, Children’s Centers and Hope FM radio station which went on air in 2003.”
The key speaker during the celebrations, Rev Dennis White asserted that Christians in the country have God given abilities, through the Holy Spirit, that could offer lasting solutions to challenges afflicting the country.
Rev White declared that Christians are and must always act as compasses that give direction and pathways to be followed by others but challenged them to forsake wickedness in order to fulfill such mandate.
He urged Christians to spread the fire of passion and commitment to godly ways among fellow citizens but lamented that many of them were cold like freezers and thus never upheld values taught by Jesus Christ in their lives.
Rev White told worshippers to abandon secular believes and materialism and to instead repent and turn to God to enable them lead purposeful lives and in accordance to God’s purpose.
He said: “Align with Gods divine purpose and radiate with love and always act as a source of light to society. Be a flame that radiates throughout your life.”
In his address Bishop Dr Bonifes Adoyo of the Christ is the Answer Ministries thanked President Kibaki for joining the ministries’ worshippers and gracing the climax of the one-week celebrations.