Power Sharing Agreement Brings Hope to Kenya

Posted by Colin Corbridge on Wed, 05 Mar 2008 | Bookmark: digg this Post this to del.icio.us Post this to Facebook

After almost 2 months of political crisis there are hopes that a power-sharing agreement by Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki and opposition leader Raila Odinga will lead to much needed reconciliation in the troubled East African country.

Following disputed elections in December 2007 violent ethnic conflict has resulted in the deaths of at least 1500 people and has seen a further 600,000 forced from their homes.

The deal, brokered by chief mediator Kofi Annan, sees the creation of a Prime Minister post which will be filled by mister Odinga.

Speaking about the agreement Kofi Annan said, “The journey is far from over. In fact it is only beginning.”

He also commented, “Compromise was necessary for the survival of this country” and stressed that, “the job of national reconciliation and national reconstruction is not for the leaders alone. It must be carried out in every neighbourhood, village, hamlet of the nation.”

Throughout the process CMS Ireland’s partners in Kenya have continued with their work and urged an end to the violence that threatened to tear the country apart. Staff in the Urban Development Programme, in Nairobi, supported community leaders in slum areas as they looked prevent an upsurge in violence, while Bishop Jeremiah Taama of Kajiado diocese acknowledged that, “There is nothing we can do except to get on with our work as usual, and to continue praying for a peaceful settlement.”

Ronnie Briggs, a CMS Ireland Mission Partner preparing for service in Kenya, is now hopeful about the future however he realises that, “It is one thing signing the peace deal but quite another implementing it. Please pray for all those concerned – that they will give this settlement a chance.”

As this next phase in Kenya’s history unfolds we would ask you to continue to remember the country in prayer – particularly its religious and political leaders.

Please pray for:

- All those in positions of leadership – ask that they would have wisdom and insight as they seek healing and reconciliation.
- Church leaders as they encourage forgiveness and look to engender trust in local communities.
- All of those affected by the violence – that they would know God’s presence and comfort.
- CMS Ireland’s partners in Nairobi and Kajiado – that they would be powerful agents for transformation in the midst of hurt.

A prayer for peace

As the fever of day calms towards twilight
May all that is strained in us come to ease.

We pray for all who suffer violence today,
May an unexpected serenity surprise them.

For those who risk their lives everyday for peace,
May their hearts glimpse providence at the heart of history.

That those who make riches from violence and war
Might hear in their dreams the cries of the lost.

That we might see through our fear of each other
A new vision to heal our fatal attraction to aggression.

That those who enjoy the privilege of peace
Might not forget their tormented brothers and sisters.

That the wolf might lie down with the lamb,
That our swords be beaten into ploughshares

And no hurt or harm be done
Anywhere along the holy mountain.

From John O’Donohue, Benedictus: a Book of Blessings, Bantam Press.

Photo Credit: BBC