Ole Sapit opposes three tiers of government

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby addresses journalists after a Sunday service at St. Stephen’s Cathedral on Jogoo Road, Nairobi. [David Njaaga, Standard]
Anglican Archbishop Jackson ole Sapit says the proposed third tier of government will burden taxpayers even more.

Speaking after a church service at St Stephen Cathedral on Jogoo Road in Nairobi yesterday, Sapit said even though there is need to have regional balance, it should not be at an extra burden on the taxpayer.

The service was attended by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.

Governors are said to be keen on a proposal in the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report regarding the establishment of a new tier called regional governments.

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“What we need to ask is if that kind of an arrangement is going to be affordable for Kenyans,” said Sapit.

He said Kenyans have been crying that even in the current arrangement, the wage bill is too high.

“If we are going to create tiers that will increase the wage bill, I think it will be very hard for Kenyans to bear the burden,” he said.

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Sapit also proposed a salary cut for public officials who are overpaid.

On BBI, he said the church has begun urging Kenyans to read and understand the document.

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Sapit noted there are important issues the document has highlighted like corruption, social inequalities and exclusion which Kenyans should have an opportunity to discuss on how to eradicate them.

Main issues

“If we can look at it in all those angles, reduce salaries where they need to be reduced, reduce over-representation, that balance is what we all need to look at,” he said.

Sapit said the church wants to engage in civic education, locate the areas they need to teach people about and make it an opportunity to correct what is wrong to make things right.

He said he had already sounded an alarm that the BBI should not only be just a political tool, but also a document that Kenyans are able to discuss issues raised.

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“I like what I saw in Mombasa the day before the rally. People were given an opportunity to talk about historical land injustices in that region and it is important for leaders to hear these issues,” Sapit said.

He added: “I was very much interested when I read the introduction of the document that we want to move Kenya from a nation of tribal ties to a nation of ideas.”

Archbishop Welby prayed for integrity and transparency to make Kenya a model for freedom of expression, democracy and human dignity.

“I pray for your political leaders, civil society, churches that they will act in a way that means there is true transparency, no corruption, no manipulation, above all no violence,” Welby said.

He added: "The poorest person sleeping on the streets somewhere is as worthy of dignity as the richest and most powerful person in this country because they are equally loved by Christ and I pray that will be a reality and not a theory." 

SEE ALSO :Team to translate BBI report to local dialects, targets 10m copies

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BBIAnglicanJackson ole SapitBuilding Bridges Initiative