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KANU beats parties deadline

NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 30 – The Kenya Africa National Union (KANU) is now among parties that have complied with the Political Parties Act before the December 31 deadline.

The former ruling party filed the necessary papers on Tuesday, and was issued with a certificate by the Registrar of Political Parties Lucy Ndung’u.

Party Secretary General Nick Salat told reporters soon after securing the certificate that they would embark on a countrywide membership recruitment drive "to boost its already formidable grassroots presence."

"We can now as a party move ahead and popularise KANU by recruiting more members.  We are very happy that we met the requirements of the Political Parties Act and want to assure Kenyans that KANU will continue to adhere to all the other laws of the land," Mr Salat said.

At least 12 out of the 168 registered political parties have been issued with certificates.

Mrs Ndung’u has already indicated that the deadline would not be extended.

Each party is required to have at least 200 members in every province; hold a delegate’s conferences and ratify respective constitutions and elect national leadership.

When KANU handed in its registration papers, the Organising Secretary Justin Muturi said his party would summon its members to discuss the impending constitutional review process.

Mr Muturi said that they wanted the constitution to take into account the varied interests of Kenyans.

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"We as a party will be calling on our membership to meet urgently so that we can begin to chart the way forward regarding the type of constitutional dispensation that will embrace views and aspirations of most Kenyans," Mr Muturi said.

"Therefore we will sit and come up with a position that is informed by the diversity of this country," he said.

The party has in the meantime urged the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) and the government to seek a lasting solution to teachers’ salary dispute.

Mr Salat said that both groups should set aside their differences and reach an agreement before schools reopen on January 5.

"I call upon the teachers and the government to sit down and iron out their differences. When schools re-open, we want students to report back under an atmosphere that is conducive and not acrimonious," said Mr Salat.

The teachers union on Monday instructed its members to go on strike on January 19 after their negotiations with the Teachers Salaries Remuneration Committee broke down over which job groups should benefit from the proposed salary increment.


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