NAIROBI, Kenya 12 – Back Bench MPs on Thursday accused the government of taking Parliament for granted and using them whenever they needed.,
Chepalungu MP Isaac Ruto said the executive had completely ignored the contribution of the MPs and had failed to communicate and work with Parliament.
“The executive operates like in the 1980s. Yesterday they called Ministers and Assistant Ministers to a meeting, but for MPs its just a matter of rubbing shoulders. They have been using as for thumbing,” he complained.
Kamukunji MP Simon Mbugua said, “We voted against the Bill because the executive thinks it can use us just for rubber stamping, today (Thursday) we have showed them we are not rubberstamps to be passing their Bills!”
Another legislator (Kigumo) Jamleck Kamau complained that the executive had been sending orders without realising the independence of Parliament.
He said during the two informal meetings (Kamukunji) held to urge them to support the Bill, the government had not given them time read it.
“We will not be cowed to be taking orders from above; they were telling us to pass Bills that we had not even read. We are not cows and we have showed that today,” he said.
Mr Kamau said for the government to lose with its two Principles in Parliament was an eye opener that Parliament required to be treated with respect.
Nairobi Metropolitan Minister Mutula Kilonzo agreed that the government was taking MPs for granted, saying Thursday’s defeat was a clear demonstration of their displeasure.
He urged the two principles to take note and look for ways of working with Parliament.
Gitobu supports new tribunal bill
Imenti Central MP Gitobu Imanyara has said the Bill was defeated because the government wanted to force it through.
He complained that the coalition government had become an ‘unworkable’ partner, blaming it for failing to listen or consult with all the stakeholders.
However, he noted that there was still an option for the government to come up with a new Bill that will meet the expectations of the civil society and the rest of the public.
He said he would fully support that Bill as long as it addressed issues raised by MPs, as well as the civil society.
“If they come up with a fresh Bill that will meet the expectations of Kenyans, I will fully support it. It should establish an independent tribunal like the Sierra Leone one, which is managed by the United Nations,” he said.
Mr Imanyara stated that the new Bill should be completely free from interferences saying it should not at all be under the control of the Kenya government.
Just like he had vowed, the lawyer managed not just to raise the quorum of 77 but 93 votes to reject the Bill against the government’s 101, against a required 145 votes to pass the crucial amendment.