Pope Francis blesses the crowd at St Joseph the Worker Church, Kangemi, Nairobi, on November 27, 2015. The Pope has said he is paying attention to Kenya crisis and prays the country may deal with current problem through dialogue towards common good. PHOTO | TONY KARUMBA | AFP
Pope Francis prays for Kenya, calls for constructive dialogue
Pope Francis on Sunday said he was paying attention to Kenya crisis and prayed that the whole country may deal with current problem through constructive dialogue towards common good.
The Pope, who also appealed for peace in the world, asked all the faithful to join him in prayer for that specific intention, and in particular for Kenya, where tensions are high in the wake of a contested and inconclusive presidential election that is scheduled to be re-run on October 26.
“I ask you to join my prayer for peace in the world,” Pope Francis said to pilgrims and tourists gathered for the Sunday Angelus prayer. “I am paying close attention in these days to Kenya, which I visited in 2015, and for which I pray, that the whole country might be able to face the current difficulties in a climate of constructive dialogue, having at heart the search for the common good.”
The crisis in Kenya reached stalemate after the country’s Supreme Court annulled the results of the presidential election held on August 8 of this year, citing “irregularities” and “illegalities” in the process.
More than 15 million people cast ballots in that poll, with 54 per cent of them going to incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta.
Opposition leader Raila Odinga – Kenyatta’s principal challenger – has pulled out of the race and called for mass protests on the day of the scheduled re-run.
Rights monitors say as many as 70 people have been killed in protests since the August vote.
After disputed elections in 2007, at least 1200 people were killed.