Kenya: Church urges government to resettle thousands displaced by election violence

 Catholic Bishops in Kenya have once again appealed to the government to prioritize the resettling of the thousands of internally displaced people living in camps, following the recent country's post elections violence. The bishops in their statement, issued on Friday, at the end of their plenary meeting, held at Saint Aquinas Major Seminary, outside Nairobi stressed that the move would enable the IDPS to on with their lives. "We need all leaders to be responsible at the grass-root level to show welcome to all these people and the local communities to receive them with open arms", the bishops stressed in their four-page statement. And they further said that the underlying issue of land must be comprehensively addressed. All efforts must be made to assist farmers and particularly to assist those who can return to their land do so in order to avoid the prevailing threat of famine, stressed the bishops, adding that planting must begin immediately in order to void the famine calamity, they said. The bishops applauded the move of the country's political leader to end the political stalemate. "This is the first experience of such a government, and so we wish to express the great expectations of the people, that honesty and trust will prevail in all their relationships", stressed the Bishops statement, signed by 22 bishops including Cardinal John Njue, currently Chairman of the Kenya Episcopal Conference. As a result of the country's post elections violence, that followed the contentious December 27, 2007 general elections, over 300,000 Kenyans were reported to have been internally displaced and an estimated 1,000 people killed, while properties worthy millions of Kenyan shillings were reported to have been destroyed.

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