Cabinet approves three key Bills

July 28, 2011 4:58 pm

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 28 – The Cabinet on Thursday approved three Bills, among them the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA) Bill 2011, which will determine the management of financial aspects between the national and county governments.

Through a press statement released to newsrooms, the Cabinet announced that it had also approved the National Payments Bill 2010 and the Kenya Deposits Insurance Corporation Bill 2011.

The approval of the CRA Bill, which was released to the Cabinet on May 23 will now leave the Independent Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission Bill 2011 the only Bill pending before the Cabinet.

However the Cabinet has on numerous occasions been accused by the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) and civil societies of slowing down the implementation of key Constitutional laws.

CIC Chairman Charles Nyachae on Tuesday said that the Cabinet had been altering Bills, including the Political Parties Bill and the Kenya National Human Rights Commission Bill, after they had been approved by his commission.

“What was initially a matter of moderate concern is now reaching alarming levels where the Cabinet, without any reference to the CIC, makes fundamental changes to a Bill that we have already approved including changes on constitutional matters,” he said.

National Civil Society Congress head Morris Odhiambo had also accused the Cabinet of overstepping its mandate by changing the bills. Mr Odhiambo argued that the Cabinet had no legal authority to amend the laws.

“The Constitution does not say that the Cabinet has to approve the Bills for the implementation of the Constitution before they are taken to Parliament so when the Cabinet insists on approving Bills, it’s like saying that the CIC should not be there,” he had said on Monday.

However Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Mutula Kilonzo argued that the Cabinet has the right to participate in the law making process and even alter Bills.

“We have a Bill of Rights that allows people to participate in political affairs so when the CIC tells the Cabinet to seal its lips and avoid changing the Bills once it receives them that is unconstitutional,” he said.

The Cabinet also announced that it had approved the ratification and domestication of the African Charter on values and principles of public service and administration. This charter supports public administration in the implementation of reforms aimed at improving service delivery.

The Cabinet has in the recent past approved four Bills including the Political Parties Bill 2011, the Kenya National Human Rights Commission Bill 2011, the National Gender Commission Bill and the Commission on Administration of Justice Bill.

According to the CIC all these Bills were sent to the Government Printer by July 15 but they are yet to be published.

Meanwhile the National Payments Bill 2010 seeks to modernise and regulate payment systems to service providers. According to the Cabinet’s statement the Bill will ensure Kenya’s payment systems comply with the Bank of International Settlements core principles and also enhance Central Bank powers to oversee payment systems in the country.

The Kenya Deposits Insurance Corporation Bill 2011, on the other hand, aims at aligning deposit insurance policies and operations in order to attain efficiency and effectiveness in the provision of financial safety nets. It also enhances the management of the liquidation process and secures the interests of policy holders.


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