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CSOs campaign against national pledge

by Stephen Jakes
21 Apr 2016 at 06:39hrs | Views
The Civil organisations have embarked on an anti- national pledge campaign denouncing the government over the move and urging citizens to resist the move.

Christians have since lambasted the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education for introducing the National Pledge which violates biblical principles, educational freedoms and Constitutional rights of children.

The National Pledge, to be launched on the 3rd of May 2016, will be recited by students daily before they begin lessons ‘just as they recite the Lord's prayer and then sing the National Anthem'.

On the day, parents and guardians are expected to accompany children to school for the launch and then present gifts for the pupils after they recite the pledge.

The Pledge has largely been criticized for violating Chapter 4, section 60 and Chapter 2 section 19: 2b of the Constitution which talks about freedom of conscience and children's rights respectively.

Speaking at a think tank meeting organized by Habakkuk Trust last week, senior church leaders, pastors, Christian organizations and individuals agreed that the Pledge directive should be reversed. They highlighted that there should have been nationwide consultations before the Pledge was introduced.

"This Pledge is unconstitutional; it should not be allowed to go on. People should stand and say we don't want this," said one pastor. "Constitutional things don't need prayer, they need action."

Some of the senior church leaders at the think tank meeting

They also noted that reciting the pledge and presenting gifts to kids is like idol worshiping.

"The idea of presenting gifts is like an altar, worshiping, honoring and respecting the dead. In our African mindset, this is like a ritual," lamented another Pastor. "Therefore Christians should not participate in the recitation of this pledge. Our message is the same, we shall not bow down."

Participants said Minister Lazarus Dokora should be directing his energy for the betterment of the education sector instead of infusing people beliefs.

"How does this better the education of our children?" asked one participant. "Other ministries are busy trying to align laws with the Constitution, Dokora should be busy looking for resources to better education."

The Christian community came up with action points to challenge the recitation of the National Pledge which include signing petitions, application to the Constitutional Court, holding massive demonstrations, holding a prayer meeting, boycotting the launch among other things.
The meeting was the introduction of a broader campaign against the National Pledge running under the theme

Source - Byo24News

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