House team report on merged plebiscite to be tabled in May

April 21, 2016 3:21 pm
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Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso who was presiding over the morning sitting assented to the request which would take effect from April 14/FILE
Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso who was presiding over the morning sitting assented to the request which would take effect from April 14/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 21 – The parliamentary committee that oversees implementation of the Constitution has been given a 21-day extension to recommend to the House how parallel initiatives to amend the Constitution can be merged into one – driven by Parliament.

In seeking the approval of the House, Constitutional Implementation Oversight Committee Vice-Chairperson Moitalel ole Kenta said they would want an orderly process where all the energies that have gone into the various initiatives are used to push one idea.

“This motion is informed by the fact that the committee had to listen to several stakeholders; some of them have appeared before the committee like the Boresha Katiba Intiative, Punguza Mzigo and many others. So we are going to a retreat this evening to ensure that we prepare and present a good report before the House,” he said.

Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso who was presiding over the morning sitting assented to the request which would take effect from April 14.

The committee had finished listening to submissions from the various groups seeking to amend the Constitution by last Sunday when their deadline to submit the report to the House had expired.

Its inquiries were sparked by a petition filed by Major (Retired) Joel Kiprono from Bomet County who has a set of radical ideas on how to make the Constitution better.

READ: CORD opposes House petition to merge referendum drives

Among his proposals is that the government introduce mandatory national military service for all youth leaving school. This would be different from the National Youth Service.

In the past, it was mandatory for students headed for public universities to go through the NYS programme first.

He proposed that landowners with more than 100 acres give up the rest for leasehold, foreigners be barred from owning land in Kenya and that the current number of counties be reduced to just three large zones.

Kiprono also proposed a rotating presidency that would give each of the 42 tribes opportunity to hold the position.

If his proposal is to be adopted then it would see Kikuyus and Kalenjins barred from the presidency for 52 years because Kenya’s founding President Jomo Kenyatta, Retired Presidents Daniel arap Moi and Mwai Kibaki and current leader Uhuru Kenyatta have held the position.

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