Elect Candidates “who worry about our environment”: Bishops in Kenya ahead of Elections

Bishop Joseph Mwongela of Kitui Diocese reading the message of members of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB). Credit: Courtesy Photo

Members of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) have urged the electorate in Kenya to consider political candidates’ track record in environmental conservation during the general elections scheduled to take place on August 9.

In their weekly Sunday message issued July 24, Catholic Bishops in the East African nation decry environmental degradation and underscore the need for political leaders with strategies to address Kenya’s ecological problems.

“As we go to the polls, we have to think about leaders who worry about our environment,” KCCB members say in their collective message, Bishop Joseph Mwongela of Kitui Diocese read out.

They emphasize the need for agenda on environmental conservation, saying, “Human development is not possible without proper strategies and enforcement mechanisms to ensure we care for and reclaim our Mother Earth.”

Catholic Bishops in Kenya regret the fact that beautiful sceneries in the country including landscapes, forests, and the wildlife have been waste, and in some cases, squandered.


“We have depleted our forests through illegal logging, charcoal burning, and cutting down trees for firewood. These activities, if unregulated, have negative outcomes,” KCCB members say in their July 24 message.

“We have seen how our rivers and fountains are drying,” they further say, adding that as a result, “access to water for human use has become a national challenge.”

The Catholic Bishop highlight the negative effects of climate change, including “rising temperatures, unusually cold weather, and unpredictable planting and harvesting seasons among other catastrophic effects. All this continues to endanger human life.”

On August 9, the Kenyan electorate is expected to vote for six categories of representatives at national and county governments, namely, the President and his Deputy, Members of Parliament (MPs), Senators, women representatives, County Governors and their respective Deputies, and members of the county assemblies (MCAs).

In their latest message, Catholic Bishops in Kenya say they desire to be part of a country that is governed by political leaders who uphold public ethics and integrity, utilizing resources for the common good.

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“We look forward to a country where corrupt practices do not exist; a country where we can access public or civil services without favoritism or need for bribery,” they say.

KCCB members further say they want “a God-fearing Nation that does not praise those perpetrators of evil, criminals, but condemns evil and facilitates its sanctions through the laid down systems.”

“Our values should always reflect resistance to a culture of corruption in all its forms,” they say, and add, “Corruption is a cancer that eats the soul of our country.”

KCCB members say they want a country where the rule of law is paramount and every person is treated equally by the law. They say, “We look forward to a country where there is no impunity, and where the powerful and wealthy do not escape so easily from great crimes and injustices.”

They emphasize the need to abide by legal structures of the country across all sectors of society, saying, “We look forward to a Kenya where the citizens follow the law, not because the police are watching but because we know it is right; where we all… follow traffic laws; where we do not look for shortcuts to circumvent a requirement of law.”


“We need leaders who can change our poor culture of celebrated evil,” Catholic Bishops in Kenya say, and caution the Kenyan electorate against political candidates who give promises through “sweet words”, which they cannot keep. 

“This is a call to be watchful of who is speaking to us in sweet words. The Kenya we desire emphasizes structures of governance that enable government delivery of services. It focuses on Kenyans working together,” KCCB members say in their July 24 message.

They explain, “We want a government that spends on the people, not its officials. We have to correct this by critically reflecting on the Kenya we desire as we go to the polls. We believe in righting wrongs, as a Church and as Kenyans because this is possible.”

In an effort to realize “the Kenya we desire”, Catholic Bishops in the East African nation urge the electorate to “listen and reflect on whom you choose to vote for.”

“The Kenya we desire depends on you making a wise decision on the ballot,” they emphasize.

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They call for Kenyans to foster peace during the electioneering period, saying, “We need to jealously guard our peace now, during, and after the election results are announced. We have proven once more we can be the true custodians of our Country.”

Silas Mwale Isenjia is a Kenyan journalist with a great zeal and interest for Catholic Church related communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communication from Moi University in Kenya. Silas has vast experience in the Media production industry. He currently works as a Journalist for ACI Africa.