POLARISED COUNTRY

World Peace Day: NCIC warns of rising political tensions

Kobia said hate speech is a threat to our fragile social cohesion fabric.

In Summary

• NCIC chairperson Samuel Kobia said on Monday during the World’s International Day of Peace that the developments at the political front as troubling.

• Samuel Kobia said a polarised country is a road for endless mistrust, hostility, and economic retrogression. 

NCIC chairman Rev. Samuel Kobia when he addressed the press on January 24, 2020.
NCIC chairman Rev. Samuel Kobia when he addressed the press on January 24, 2020.
Image: WILFRED NYANGARESI

The National Cohesion and Integration Commission has urged politicians and leaders to lead championing for peace in the country.

NCIC chairperson Samuel Kobia said on Monday during the World’s International Day of Peace that the developments at the political front as troubling.

“The incitement and hate speech spewed by both leaders and some of their followers across the country is a threat to our fragile social cohesion fabric,” Kobia said.

 
 

“We cannot allow our country to slide back to the ugly scenario that led to the 2007/2008 PEV.”

The NCIC chair has also said the country should cultivate a culture of peace to replace the devastating culture of violence, respect for the law, and tolerance for divergent opinions.

“A polarised country is a road for endless mistrust, hostility, and economic retrogression. A diverted people will only aggravate our existing predicaments and relegate us to a shameful status of extreme intolerance and mockery,” he said.

The theme for this year is ‘shaping peace together’.

The commission marked the day in Nairobi, Narok, Nandi, Kakamega, Mandera and Elgeyo Marakwet counties.

Interior CS Fred Matiangi, environment CS Keriako Tobiko and Land CS Farida Karoney held discussions with delegates from the Ogiek and Kipsigis communities residing in Eastern Mau Forest Block.

Matiang'i said the meeting was a directive from President Uhuru Kenyatta, with the aim of resolving the conflict witnessed in the area.

In a similar event, five governors from the Lake Region Economic Bloc signed a peace accord binding communities from their counties from engaging in violence.

The leaders want residents from respective counties to be encouraged to engage more in economic and social affairs among themselves to discourage the breaking of the law.

Governors Wycliffe Oparanya (Kakamega), Stephen Sang (Nandi), Wilbur Otichilo (Vihiga), Paul Chepkwony (Kericho) and Mathew Owili (Kisumu deputy governor).