The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Evangelist Holds End-Year Repentance Rally in Kisumu

PROPHET David Owuor's annual end year repentance rally ended in Kisumu with calls for national healing and repentance ahead of the elections due on March 4.

Owuor said Kenya has only one chance to avert violence after the general election - by organising a national repentance rally at Uhuru Park to be attended by all the country's leaders. He called on President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga to organise a national repentance rally so that Kenyans can have peace after the elections.

Thousands of local and international Christian faithful thronged the lakeside city for the three-day rally at the Kisumu's Moi stadium between December 30 and January 1.

Worshippers who did not secure a space within the stadium converged outside where they followed the prayers on huge speakers mounted around the pitch.

Those who did not come for the rally also followed the prayers on Jesus is Lord radio that aired the prayers live. The faithful came from as far as Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo.

There were some delegates from Europe and Asia. Security was tight with police officers brought from across Nyanza region's six counties of Kisumu, Siaya, Homabay, Migori, Kisii and Nyamira according to Kisumu East DC Willy Cheboi who was in charge of security during the rally.

There was booming business as locals erected temporary kiosks around stadium where majority of the worshippers at the rally had their meals.

Petrol stations witnessed a booming business too with local churches cashing in on parking charges. Local schools were a blessing for the worshippers as they managed to secure parking spaces for their vehicles.

Faithful used several hired buses that camped in the city for nearly five days before and after the rally. The worshippers spent nights at the stadium while Owuor and his entourage were booked at the magnificent Imperial Hotel.

Administration and regular police officers patrolled around the hotel to ensure safety for the men of God. There was a traffic snarl-up whenever the prophet's motorcade left to and from the stadium for the prayers.

Traffic police had hectic time controlling vehicles and blocked some roads to ensure smooth running of the businesses in the town.

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