Kenyan officials begin crucial tasks

August 10, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 10 – Senior officials at the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs have retreated to Naivasha to work out a programme for legislations needed for the implementation of the new Constitution.

Minister Mutula Kilonzo told Capital News that the meeting, which started on Monday evening, is meant to advice the government on the prioritisation of the legislations to support the new law.

Mr Kilonzo says the team is joined by members of the of various reform institutions including the Law Reform Commission which will be key in formulating dozens of the legislations.

“We are going to map out the technical aspects of what is required for the actual facilitation of what is required,” he said.

The government is required to table at least 48 legislations within the next five years for the implementation of the new law for debate and adoption. Key legislations that are almost immediate include the Bill to reconstitute the Judicial Service Commission, the Elections Bill, the Police Service Bill and the Supreme Court Bill.

The first step in Parliament will be the formation of the Commission of Implementation of the Constitution and the government is expected to table Bill to legislate the new commission immediately after the promulgation on August 27.

“We are waiting for the formation of the Commission by the President and the Constitution of the oversight committee by the House because we will need to engage with these two in tabling the Bills,” said Mr Kilonzo.

The Minister however assured that his ministry has many of the legislations ready awaiting Cabinet endorsement and parliamentary approval.

“It is essential that Kenyans understand that the ministry has got all that is required for purposes of implementing the Constitution,” he said adding that “the 48 (laws) for us are just like a piece of cake.”

Mr Kilonzo says that some of the anticipated laws are in existence and all will be required is to amend these and address inconsistencies.

“This is where we might get challenges as we try to make them in tune with other laws,” he said.

A member of the Committee of Experts Njoki Ndung’u agreed with the Minister, saying some of the laws already exist and they will continue being in operation.

 “What will happen is that we will have a lot of amendments to amend the existing laws. What I’m seeing happen is the Attorney General will bring in what is called the Miscellaneous Amendment Bills,” she said

Speaking on Capital in the Morning show, Ms Ndung’u said that most of the new laws to be enacted are those on reforms such as the new elections Bill, those on counties, the Supreme Court and the Senate.


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