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Ministry Thankful for Help; Kenya’s Violence Continues

March 27, 2008

Sylvester O’kango, leader of Kenya Evangelism Team, sent this report to Christian Aid:

Kenyans standing in front of building

”We send our love and gratitude in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to the brethren of Christian Aid. Thank you so much for what you have done for us. All our indigenous missionaries and children do express their appreciation."

"We provided blankets, food and clothing to our displaced pastors, and they highly appreciated you for your support."

"Despite the fact that there has been crisis in Kenya, you have really been behind us, sending funds to help the displaced people who are the victims of the crisis. As they are living in camps, they do not have bedding, clothing or enough food. Also, their children need to go back to school."

"Since the crisis, we have begun to care for 31 additional children, who were left orphaned by the post-election violence. Most are 3 to 7 years old. Those who are school age are receiving education at our center."

"We ask that you help us provide these children with uniforms, bedding, books and food."

"Though there have been peace negotiations, people are still really suffering and being attacked by rebels. There are still tribal clashes going on—people killing each other, burning houses and taking livestock. However, in other parts there is peace, but people have not gone back to their homes—they are still living in camps."

Please pray for Sylvester Okang’o and the staff of Kenya Evangelism Team. Join Christian Aid in supplying their needs as they attempt to alleviate the suffering that surrounds them. They are in desperate need of help to care for the 31 additional children left orphaned and homeless by the tragedy. Their resources are being stretched thin.

Please consider assisting one of these 31 child victims. For $25 per month, a child’s needs, including food, clothing, bedding and school materials, will be covered.

Violence and Terror Continue: Kenya’s Masses Still Suffer Despite Authorities’ Power-Sharing Deal

After months of horrendous post-election violence, Kenyan president, Mwai Kibaki, agreed to share power with his rival, Raila Odinga. Yet while the two men seem to have found common ground, the rest of the nation has not even begun to recover from the inhumane treatment inflicted on so many victims. And their supporters on both sides remain unconvinced and dissatisfied with the political "solution."

The wounded, homeless and hurting continue arriving in camps around the country as sporadic attacks continue. This same government that failed to protect its citizens during the violence is now failing to provide stability and to help them return to their homes and rebuild.

A report from the UN fact-finding mission states, "The scale of the violence and destruction indicates the failure of the Kenyan State to protect its citizens' right to life, security and property during these events."

Based on evidence discovered by several human rights organizations, the post-election attacks were organized by opposition leaders against Kibaki’s Kikuyu ethnic group and the tribes that support them. Rather than attempting to bring peace, Kenyan police (under government order) killed hundreds of the opposition party. Kikuyu gangs gathered together for reprisal attacks, systematically killing or mutilating members of the Luo, Kalenjin and Luhya ethnic groups, which backed Odinga, a Luo.

More than 1,000 people were killed in these attacks, and more than half a million are displaced, still packed into camps and afraid to return to their homelands. Many have no shelter, their homes having been destroyed. Tensions are higher than ever between ethnic groups.

Lawless thugs with no political agenda used the opportunity to vandalize, steal, rape and kill, adding to the reign of terror not seen in Kenya since the Mau Mau Rebellion in the early 1950s. Just yesterday, nine people were killed in cattle raids in the Rift Valley, where residents support opposition leader Odinga.

What is the solution offered by Kibaki and Odinga to their broken and battered countrymen? A trite recommendation to simply “forget” about “what happened” is the response. Kibaki has urged his fellow Kikuyus simply to return to their homes, despite the death threats many of them have received from other ethnic groups. Neither Kibaki nor Odinga have visited the homeless masses now living in camps, nor the towns left in smoldering ruin.

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