Govt welcomes CSOs into law review

March 12, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 12 – The government has said that it will introduce changes to the Constitutional Review Amendment Act to bring back a framework where various stakeholders will be consulted during the constitution making process.

Justice Minister Martha Karua said on Thursday that a statutory Miscellaneous Bill would be published as soon as Parliament reopens, to oblige the committee of experts to include the opinions of other interest groups.

“We’ll be publishing the return of the schedule that was removed when the bill was passed,” Ms Karua told a consultative meeting of the civil society congress.

“The schedule was having a list of members of the reference groups. While that reference remains within the law, the schedule is missing.”

Ms Karua said that the Parliamentary legal committee had agreed to the reintroduction of the schedule.
Among the amendments is an inclusion of the recently created constitutional court into the process.

“There are references to the High Court in the act whereas the constitutional amendment anchoring the review created a constitutional court, to deal with review matters,” she explained.

The civil society has continually called for its inclusion in the review process, and on Thursday Ms Karua met members of the civil society, where she assured them that their input would be incorporated.

A committee of experts started work early this month and has one year to deliver a new law.

Meanwhile, the government has operationalised the Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission act.

Ms Karua said the act was operationalised last Monday.

“The reason we took too long was because we had to do preparatory work before gazzetting the act. Within 14 days of operation the panel that will nominate the commissioners has to advertise,” she said.

The nominating panel was expected to hold its first meeting on Thursday afternoon.


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