Kenya: Religious Leaders Urge Citizens to Vote Wisely in August Elections

Nairobi — Religious leaders in the country have urged Kenyans to diligently assess and vet candidates contesting for different seats to make informed choices during the August 9 polls.

Speaking to journalists Thursday, the Dialogue Reference Group, made up of Muslims, Christian and Hindu religious leaders, advised Kenyans to be wary of leaders who incite them to engage in violence or any other acts of lawlessness before, during and after the elections.

“We must not allow ourselves to be used by people who only want to be used by people who only want to be elected so as to enrich themselves with public resources,” Mombasa Catholic Archbishop Martin Kivuva said in a joint statement.

The religious leaders asked President Uhuru Kenyatta not to take sides while exercising his right to support candidates of his choice in the upcoming polls.

“We continue to urge the President, as the symbol of national unity, to balance his right to support candidates of his choice with the duty to assure all Kenyans that the state will not unduly influence the electoral process.” Kivuva said.

Kivuva further asked all state officers to desist from engagement in political activities as per the constitution in reference to different Cabinet Secretaries including Interior CS Fred Matiangi, his ICT counterpart Joe Mucheru and Defense CS Eugene Wamalwa who have been widely criticized for their involvement on campaigns.

Kivuva reminded all registered voters to ensure they have verified their voter registration details in order to fulfil their right to vote.

On his part, the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims (SUPKEM) Deputy Secretary General Hassan Ole Naado asked all aspirants to accept the results announced by Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) after the August polls or seek redress in court if aggrieved.

The religious leaders asked Kenyans to exercise peace and harmony during the electioneering period to ensure a peaceful election.

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