KENYA: Keep Peace in Elections, Uganda Archbishop Urges Kenyans

NAIROBI MAY 26, 2017(CISA) – Archbishop John Baptist Odama of the Catholic Archdiocese of Gulu, Uganda has called on Kenyans to maintain peace during and after the August 8, General Elections.

“My advice to you Kenyans is that never again should you go the 2007 way where violence broke out. You will shame us as East Africans. You need to maintain peace during the preparations for elections and after,” said Archbishop Odama, Chairman of Episcopal Conference of Uganda.

Speaking during an International Conference on Sustainable Security and Peace in Africa at Tangaza University College in Nairobi, May 25, Archbishop Odama appealed to all aspiring leaders to accept the will of the people whatever the outcome.

“I am appealing to all the Presidential aspirants in this country, there is only one chair there. Not everyone can win it. If you lose, accept that it is the voice of the people. The voice of the people is the voice of God. We must move forward ever for peace and sustainability of security in Africa,” he said.

He said that peace must be safeguarded consistently and no political leader should be allowed to take advantage and cause violence.

Archbishop Odama, who is also the chairman of Acholi Religious Leaders’ Peace Initiative (ARLPI) that played a key role in ending the over two decade of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) war in northern Uganda noted that without sustainable peace in Africa it will be impossible to develop.

In his presentation during the conference, Bishop Emeritus Paride Taban of Torit and founder of Kuron Peace Village, a peace organization in South Sudan, called on African leaders to preach peace and unity.

“African leaders should preach peace and Unity. I have never; I have never been and will never be pessimistic about this. I am very optimistic that there will be sustainable peace in Africa,” he said.

The two day peace conference, May 25-26, covered topics on Political and governance: contestations of violence, Global source and circulations of violence, Social economic factors of conflicts, Climate change, Gender and conflicts and Management of democratic elections in Africa.

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