BURKINA FASO: Bishops call for Peaceful Elections

OUAGADOUGOU SEPTEMBER 8, 2015 (CISA)– Catholic bishops of Burkina Faso have called for conversion among citizens and a change in mindset for peaceful, free and transparent elections.

“All of us should aspire to a democracy which requires especially a change of mentality at all levels to achieve peaceful elections that are free and transparent,” said the bishops in their Pastoral Letter.

In the Letter entitled “Political commitment: a supreme expression of love” the bishops urged Burkinabe citizens to fully participate in the forthcoming presidential elections scheduled to take place on October 11, reported Vatican Radio.

They reiterated that for elections to be credible, they must take place in a spirit of reconciliation.

“We must all commit ourselves to reducing the current social divide and walk towards true reconciliation,” said the Bishops adding that “All must have the courage to tell the truth, to ask, to give and receive forgiveness; to have the courage to do what is right and to fight impunity.

The bishops made a plea for peace and asked the people to avoid war saying wars do not solve the problems for which they are conducted.

“Wars often cause more wars because they nourish deep hatred and they create situations of injustice and the trampling-on of the dignity and rights of other people,” they said.

The prelates further asked new leaders that will be chosen by voters to address the real problems faced by the people of Burkina Faso such as food insecurity and the growing need to respect of the environment.

“Let those who will be elected remember to work to bring about a truly participatory democracy,” said the bishops.

The forthcoming elections will mark the end of the transition period, which began after the popular uprising of October 30 and 31, 2014 which led to the resignation and exile of former President Blaise Compaoré.

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