First lady Margaret Kenyatta has called upon the citizenry to exercise good neighborliness in a bid to promote peaceful co-existence and co-operation among communities.
Speaking when she joined followers of the Baha’i faith one of the youngest religions of the world- to celebrate the birth of their Prophet Baha’u’llah, the First Lady noted exercising the virtues would see the building of a united world, free from prejudices and dysfunctional societies.
The First Lady also singled out service to the people, peaceful co-existence and co-operation among communities across the world as the only real remedy to the many afflictions facing the world today.
“These are indeed true ingredients to building a united world, free from prejudices and dysfunctional societies we see today”, said the First Lady.
She spoke at a Nairobi hotel where members of the Baha’i faith celebrated the 200th anniversary of the birth of Prophet Baha’u’llah who founded the faith mid 19th century, making it one of the youngest religions of the world.
Prophet Baha’u’llah (Mirza Husayn Ali Nuri) was born in Persia (modern Iran) in 1817 but the Bahai faith has since been accepted by over 5 million followers in some 236 nations and territories.
Since the introduction of Bahai in Kenya in the early 1950s, the population of its followers has since increased to over 300,000 faithful spread across major urban centres of Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru, Kakamega, Kericho, Nyeri and Kakamega.
Unity and the oneness of the human race, progressive and renewal of religion, equality of men and women, oneness of religion, education for all, global citizenship that considers the world as one country are some of the central teachings of Baha’u’llah.
“The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens”, Prophet Baha’u’llah is quoted in one of his key teachings.
The First Lady was hosted at the celebrations by members of the National Spiritual Assembly of Bahai’s of Kenya led by their chairman, Mr. Hamed Ehsani.
As the world celebrates the 200th anniversary (being marked across the world), said the First Lady, there is need for people to re-evaluate themselves on whether they cultivate adequate love and harmony among citizens of the world.
She said that it was encouraging that despite the fundamental differences that exist between religious traditions, different people can still recognize that they are part of one human family.
The First Lady applauded the noble initiatives of the Baha’i including peace building and education with special regard to girls and women.
“You have helped cultivate hope for the future of many, and positively impacted many lives through your work in improving access to health and sanitation across Kenyan communities”, said the First Lady.
Besides members of the Baha’i faith, the celebrations were attended by faithful from other religions including diplomats.
The President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Paul Kihara (Anglican) said all human beings, regardless of their religions, struggle with the same challenges, temptations, weaknesses, and earthly failures.
Other members of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’I’s of Kenya who addressed the function included Mrs Luch Emerson, Mrs Joy Mboya and Mrs Agatha Nketisia.