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Kiambaa Church Razed During 2007 Violence Appeals for Help to Rebuild

The Kenya Assemblies of God (KAG) Kiambaa church in Eldoret has appealed for help to rebuild the sanctuary which was razed down during the 2007-2008 post-election violence.

The church was set on fire by charged youth, killing over 35 people, including women and children, who had sought refuge in it following the post polls chaos in the vast Rift Valley. 

Thirteen years after the incident, the place of worship had remained a monument of shame and a bitter reminder of the extremes of political instigated ethnic hatred. 

Two warring groups fighting. PHOTO | COURTESY

However, in an advert in a local daily on Friday, March 25, the church, led by Bishop Kamau Mariko, said they have been planning to rebuild it despite facing opposition from the local politicians implicated in the tragedy.

“With God’s grace, the rebuilding of the church began last month (February) and construction is currently underway,” read the advert in part.

As a result, the leadership of the church appealed to well-wishers to help in the reconstruction process by contributing to the project.

In the January 1, 2008 arson attack at the church, a furious crowd doused it with gasoline and set it on fire.

According to a witness, Grace Githuthwa, quoted by The Guardian, over 200 people had thronged the church to shelter from the violence.

Later, she heard a group of people singing war songs running towards the church compound.  They were armed with bows, arrows and machetes.

“They started cutting the church door with a panga. We kneeled down and surrendered. It was quiet, as we were all praying. We knew this was the end,” she said.

Immediately, mattresses soaked with paraffin were pushed through the church windows and others used to block the door. 

READ ALSO: Boy, 14, dies after being set on fire by siblings

Matches were then thrown in and fire engulfed the wooden building.

Those who tried to escape through the windows were blocked by the youth who were waiting outside.

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