His conscience could not allow him to sit anymore and watch as his people suffered because of what he terms poor leadership.
That is why Father George Kimani plunged into politics and became MCA for Nachu Ward in Kiambu County.
The 52-year-old ordained priest of the Orthodox Church withstood attacks to his character to trounce his competitors in the August 9 polls. This was his second attempt after a failed bid in 2017.
Fr Kimani does not regret the decision to engage in active politics while at the same time serving at the pulpit. According to the priest, church and politics are joined at the hip.
“The only difference between the church and politics is navigation through moderate politics, which the church plays, and hardline politics preferred by politicians,” says Kimani.
He claims his detractors ganged up against him during the campaigns and accused him of theft, illegal land acquisition, and being a philanderer, on online platforms.
“To their surprise, it is not me who answered them; they met a fiery opposition online discrediting them with facts. I am happy they later came to me and sought for forgiveness and I forgave them unconditionally,” says the priest who ministers at Kamangu Orthodox Church.
Citing the examples of Archbishop Macarios of Cyprus who was the head of the church and the president of Cyprus at the same time, and former Mutuini MCA Father John Ngethe, Kimani is happy that his church does not prohibit followers from vying for political positions.
“Service to human beings is service to God. That is my motto. I cannot preach to people that are having poor leadership. I cannot sit and watch my people suffer because of something I can do and improve their lives. And if that calls for me to vie for a political seat, then so be it,” he says.
Kimani garnered about 95 per cent of the votes, leaving his competitors in the dust.
“Even before I vied for MCA here in Nachu I worked as a senior sales representative at Simba Colt Motors while a priest. But when I got a chance to fly to Greece I made friends there and asked them to help me support my people in various projects as Nachu is largely a dry area. They heard me and trusted me with funds which saw me construct a hospital for my people,” he says. Though politics is associated with bad things, Kimani says even Jesus never missed the opportunity to mingle with bad people.
“In Nachu and Kiambu generally, I want to bring sobriety into politics. I am happy that my fellow MCAs respect me. We usually start our sittings with a word of prayer and they respect that. I balance my interactions depending on situations as I strive to uphold my integrity,” he says.
When The Standard visited Kamangu Orthodox Church on Sunday, Kimani was busy administering Holy Communion to the faithful as well as receiving tithe.
After the service, Kimani took time to update the congregation on bursary disbursement, and projects on roads and health.
“This is how busy I am on Sundays replenishing the souls of the congregation with the word of God while serving them as their MCA. I just remove my robes and listen to Nachu people right inside this church. My calling is these people.”
Munga Mbuiyu, his colleague at the Kiambu County Assembly, described Kimani as “a true leader, humble and easygoing.”
“We respect Fr George Kimani so much. At the Assembly, he is not only a prolific debater but one who gives us spiritual guidance,” said Mr Munga.
Kamangu Orthodox Church chairman Paul Kang’ethe hailed Kimani as a person “gifted in leadership and whose balance of church matters and politics is admirable.”