Last month Pascal Nyabenda, president of the National Assembly, accused the Catholic Church for playing a “purely political, not spiritual role”, and asked the government not to talk to “sponsors of terrorism” and “insurgent individuals who participated in the destabilization of democratically elected institutions.”
But, Patrick Nicholson, communications director of Caritas Internationalis said that “the Church is engaged in peacemaking by bringing communities together and explaining to politicians the importance of talking to each other.”
“The Church is also giving crucial support to agriculture, schooling and multiple social services, including health care, which would be in a dramatic state without the church’s 101 hospitals and clinics. People would face great hardships if the Church’s work was discontinued,” he continued.
The Church on the other hand asked the government to change its attitude as fears grow of civil war.