NAIROBI, April 20 – The Catholic Church has called on the government to involve Kenyans when carrying out ‘much needed reforms’ in the country.
Former Catholic Archbishop Ndingi Mwana a’ Nzeki said including the public in restructuring the governance and service delivery processes was crucial to propel the reform agenda to ‘even greater heights’.
“Please come out and involve us and let us look for a solution that will make a Kenya that we want it to be, lets make it a place of peace, understanding and forgiveness,” he said.
Constitutional, electoral and land policy reforms are part of the agenda for a national dialogue committee tasked with seeking a permanent end to a political crisis that turned violent, after disputed December presidential polls.
Along with a power sharing agreement, the reforms are expected to see to it that any injustices revolving around land especially, are conclusively dealt with.
More than 1,000 people were killed and another 350,000 displaced as a result of the violence.
Ndingi, who was also appointed by President Mwai Kibaki to chair the Mitigation Committee of Internally Displaced Persons, said service delivery should be the driving force for the newly formed government.
“We are first of all Kenyans then whatever we do comes after. What we are saying is that Kenyans are ready to be involved in the formation of the new Kenya, at every level,” he uttered.
The retired Church leader also urged Kenyans to keep the new unity government under close scrutiny and added that the future of the country ‘fell barely on every single Kenyan’s shoulder’.
The Church also expressed support and satisfaction with the grand Coalition Government, formed last week by President Kibaki.
Ndingi spoke at the Holy Family Basilica in Nairobi, where the consultation for inter-religious dialogue committee led the Sunday mass.
The Committee said it was focussed on helping Christians to live in harmony with other religious and non-religious groupings.
Committee member Father Chichi Denise Isizoh said their coming to Kenya was symbolic as it emphasised the country’s importance in the region.
“Kenya is always a good example for Africa. We were worried about Kenya before but having come here, our testimony to the world is that this is a country of joy,” he said.
Isizoh said the recent political turmoil experienced by the country was a setback, but the formation of the coalition government had settled the issue and shown the way for other states stricken by political mishaps.
“Generally in Africa we have peaceful co-existence. Even though we have difficulties it’s rarely been about religion, many times it’s about the ethnic divisions and political problems.”