PICTURE: MARSABIT DIOCESE CONSOLATA CATHEDRAL(CATHOLIC CHURCH) AFTER ROGUE YOUTHS SMASHED WINDOWS AND DESTROYED VEHICLES IN CHURCH COMPOUND
AUTHOR: SAID WABERA(VETERAN JOURNALIST)
The Catholic Church is the most respected institution in Northern Kenya. Just after Independence, the Catholic Church took over the responsibilities of Kenya government constructing schools and health facilities, training and employing teachers and nurses. Due to nomadic tendencies of moving from one place to another, it built girls and boys boarding schools for the pastoral communities in the then NFD.
From Tana River, Garissa, Wajir Mandera, Isiolo, Marsabit and Turkana they provided vital link to a better life – education. The entire leadership in place of position in the govt today, passed through the hands of Catholic Church. If it were not for the Catholic Church, honestly we would have been nowhere. What is even more humane about the Catholic Church is it never discriminated against Muslims and muslim children. It accepted all.
Today, if you ask a Muslim who is the best Muslim in Marsabit, the response will be without hesitation Fr John Astegiano, the Catholic priest who shaped and moulded our future into what we are today. As a Muslim, am yet to see any profound contribution from those I profess the same religion with me. The Catholic Church preaches the gospel. It never converts. It is up to the individual.
When NFD was close district in Kenya Catholic Church missionaries risked their lives walking at nights bitten by poisonous reptiles and endure scorching sun just to transform northern Kenya and that’s why today we are in global maps with elites in different sectors in pursuit for greatness for our society, This is reason why we should remain together.
Before devolution, the people of northern Kenya were taken care of by the Catholic church. What surprises me most is why the representatives of the National Govt never took interest in uneducated, unprofessional busybodies calling themselves sheikhs and allow this men defile the minds of youths, specifically those under 16 years.
The indoctrination process has been going on for long. These so called sheikh are school dropouts, half- baked and dangerous to our community and the future of our youth. They have belt built all over nests for terrorism. Its a fact.
In Marsabit, strangers Pakistan, move around in group of three, sleep in mosques outside in Marsabit town. Why the Nyumba Kumi and the intelligence arms of the govt ignored their presence and treat it as a norm, is beyond my comprehension.
Now, this brings to the fore, is the government part of the scheme to radicalise the region and make it ungovernable to allow use of Marshall law? Why is radicalization allowed to thrive in northern Kenya yet Kenya believes in the rule of law? Will Kenyans live to enjoy their new found wealth of oil, gas, rare earth and other minerals? Is there a deliberate move to split this country into north and south (Muslims and Christian enclaves) – war and peace? Kenya needs to pick a lot from Ethiopia on matters security.
In the Ethiopia, every four Ethiopians walking together, three are govt informers. In Kenya, three of every Kenyans walking together, including intelligence officers, are informers for foreigners.
On a lighter note let me end this with an african proverb “A river that forgets its source will surely dry up”