No camp in Kenya law battle gears for fight

June 7, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 7 – The ‘No’ camp has said that all is set for the official launch of its secretariat and campaign program this Wednesday.

Head of the secretariat Tom Namwamba said the team will unveil its campaign strategy and key campaign message for the nation on the grounds it is opposing the proposed Constitution.

“I can assure you powerful statements will be made on that day,” Mr Namwamba said on Monday while announcing the establishment at the Red Card Center in Upper Hill.

“We want Kenyans to know that they are in the trap if they accept the new constitution. We want to get them out of that trap,” he added.

Higher Education Minister William Ruto has emerged as the political leader of the camp and has aggressively singlehandedly traversed the country in the company of other politicians but Mr Namwamba says the team will now carry out well coordinated campaigns.

The camp which is mainly opposed to the land chapter especially a provision that empowers Parliament to set the minimum and maximum land size, is also riding on the Church’s opposition to the proposed law due to the inclusion of Kadhis’ courts and a clause on abortion.

“We need Kenyans to know that the ‘No’ team is not opposed to the new Constitution but what we are saying is we need a Constitution that measures to the expectations of all Kenyans,” he said.

“We need a Constitution that is people-based not government driven.”

President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga are leading the ‘Yes’ campaign and have jointly led three major rallies in the last month at Uhuru Park, Embakasi and Mombasa. The two principals have urged Kenyans to pass the new law they believe is generally good and push for amendments later.

“It can take us three months to correct the contentious issues since we know them. I read malice and a hidden agenda and the rush in wanting to have a new Constitution all of us have agreed is faulty,” charged Mr Namwamba.

The ‘No’ camp at the same time unveiled its youth wing with a bid to mobilise over five million youths for the ‘No’ vote. National Youth Coordinator Nixon Korir said the wing has put in place strategies to mobilise their peers across the country.

“This Constitution fails to cater effectively on the representation of the youth. It is sad we only have two representatives, one in the National Assembly and one at the Senate,” he said.

“Most of the youths are not informed on the contents and when we educate them we are seeing positive results,” he added.

A member Grace Mbomu said they are exploring social media to woo the youth.

“We have groups on Facebook, Twitter and a website to educate the youth on this,” she said.

The “Yes’ secretariat launched its youth wing two weeks ago as the battle for the youths vote intensifies.


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