April 6, 2016 – Do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God

Rev. Jeff Gannon

The pastor from Iowa was in Wichita for a wedding and he came to worship at Chapel Hill the next morning. We invited he and his wife to the front at the end of the service for prayer and anointing. He sent me the following letter the next morning….this is about his brother.

To “do justice,” is to be an advocate for someone who cannot advocate for themselves. Such is the case for Vano. I pray you will help me in writing letters for Vano’s care and release. Please read below….

Vano Kiboko, is currently serving a three year prison sentence for publicly opposing a third term for the president of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Joseph Kabila. He was transferred to a military detention centre in Kinshasa on 27 January, following accusations that he was trying to create an “insurrectional movement” (Eating with prisoners and praying with them) within the civilian prison where he was detained.

Vano Kiboko, a former member of parliament was arrested on 29 December 2014 after speaking out against a third term for DRC’s president Joseph Kabila. He was sentenced to three years in prison on 14 September 2015 for incitement to racial and tribal hatred and spreading false rumours.

Vano Kiboko, was serving his sentence at Makala central prison in Kinshasa, DRC’s capital, when he was transferred to Ndolo military prison, also in Kinshasa, on 27 January. A government spokesperson accused him of creating an “insurrectional movement” within Makala central prison without providing credible details in support of these accusations. According to his lawyers, the procedure to transfer a prisoner to a different place of detention was not followed.

His family has also expressed concerns about his health and the need for appropriate care.

Amnesty International considers him a prisoner of conscience and continues to call for his immediate and unconditional release.

Please write immediately:

  1. Urging president Obama to ask Congolese’s president to immediately and unconditionally release Vano Kiboko, as he is being held solely for the peaceful exercise of his human rights;
  2. In any event, calling on them to ensure Vano Kiboko has access to medical care as necessary, and;
  3. Urging them to ensure Vano Kiboko has effective access to his family members and his lawyer without delay.

Gracious and loving God, we pray for Vano. Be with him and remind him that you are at work in him and in his situation bringing hope and peace in the midst of conflict and pain. We pray for Vano’s release. We pray for Vano’s brother Kiboko and family and all who care about Vano’s well being. By the power of your Holy Spirit, grant them grace sufficient for every need they have this day. We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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