KENYA: Church Remembers Fr John Kaiser the Human Rights Activist

NAIROBI, AUGUST 23, 2019 (CISA)-Bishop John Oballa Owaa, the Chairman of Catholic Justice and Peace Commission of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops, has called on the government, the church, the civil society, and the international community to help put an end to impunity in the country.

According to a statement released on August 23, marking the 19th anniversary of the death of Fr John Anthony Kaiser, the bishop lamented continued injustices on the vulnerable in the society.

Fr John Anthony Kaiser was on August 24, 2000 found dead at Morendat near Naivasha Town, along the Nakuru-Nairobi Highway.

“Fr John Kaiser was known and is remembered for the work he did for the vulnerable and poor who are still facing injustices and oppression in our society today. In his years of service in the communities he served, the people often faced land injustices and would forcefully be driven out of their lands,” reads the statement.

The statement further noted that anyone who spoke out against these evictions faced danger but this did not stop Fr Kaiser from speaking out fearlessly.  “…he took it upon himself to live in the camps at Maela, in Narok County, with victims who had been evicted from their land in Eno-Subukia following tribal clashes in the area.”

According to findings after an inquest opened by the Government of Kenya at the request of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB), Fr Kaiser was murdered and the fronted ‘suicide theory’ was based on a pre-conceived notion.

The then presiding Magistrate ruled on August 1, 2007 that the court could not, on the basis of evidence tabled in the inquest, point out with certainty who the priest’s killers were.

“The continued oppression of the vulnerable shows the extent of impunity and injustice where the systems do not serve the people and the rule of law is not upheld,” reads the statement by bishop Oballa.

He reassured that guided by the mission of supporting the vulnerable and speaking on their behalf, the CJPC commission will continue fighting against injustice and oppression.