Religious Leaders Ask Government To Form Directorate To Oversee Registration Of Churches

By The Weekly Vision

Clerics in Bungoma are now asking the government to form a directorate that will oversee the registration of new churches in the country. They say that Bungoma alone has over 4,000 churches arguing that some did not follow the right channel during registration. Kibabii University in Bungoma County hosted the Bishop Mark Kariuki-led Commission that is going around the country collecting views from the public.

The event saw church leaders drawn from all denominations giving their views on how the church should be run to curb cultism. Speaking at the event Bungoma County government Chaplain Bishop Calistus Barasa said that the government should form a directorate and devolve it to the counties to oversee the registration of new churches in the region.

“What the taskforce is doing is a bold move but to curb the operation of rogue churches in the society the government should form a directorate and devolve it to the counties,” he said. Barasa lauded the commission for moving across the entire country to get views that finally make recommendations.

Bishop Mark Kariuki, the commission’s chairman called on Kenyans not to associate all church leaders with Shakahola adding that one church should not spoil the name of all churches in Kenya. “When we give our views let us not focus much on the Shakahola incident, not everybody is associated with such behaviors and where we are heading, we shall solve that problem once and for all,” Kariuki said.

Kariuki however affirmed that the commission is going to incorporate all the views gathered across the country. Bungoma County police commander Francis Kooli said that he is collaborating with Bungoma church leaders to probe the suspected shrines run within the region.

Mr Kooli said that the church should be supported to offer guidance to its followers noting that it is the reason why he visited some churches in Bungoma to ascertain if it is following the right channels. “This religious leaders seated here today have been seeing me in their places of worship demanding certification from relevant bodies to authorize the operation of the church,” Kooli added.

The police boss affirmed that the probe will still go on in Bungoma churches to ensure that they are following the right channel of worship. For instance, Kooli noted that the DCI officers were able to summon Eliud Wekesa alias ‘Yesu wa Tongaren’ to grill him over his Tongaren church and what he teaches his followers. “The crackdown on rogue churches is still on, I want to ensure that all churches in Bungoma are operating as required, but most of the churches in Bungoma have complied,” Kooli said.

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