Civic education would have aided IIBRC

November 29, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 29 – The defunct Interim Independent Boundaries Review Commission (IIBRC) has been faulted for failing to conduct sufficient civic education on its work.

The chairman of the Centre for Multi-Party Democracy-Kenya (CMD), Prof Larry Gumbe said on Monday that the lack of information was to blame for the current stalemate on the proposed new constituencies.

“No matter the view one takes on the work of the Andrew Ligale-led IIBRC whose term has ended, one issue that sticks out seems to be that there should have been better civic education. This is the reason why very few people, if any, seem to know what the commission was really doing,” he said.

He is however urging for sobriety from all participants in the debate so that the matter can be resolved amicably.

“The Ligale team went and collected views from a lot of people. I believe they had maybe 130 to 140 hearings all over. This was done very well in all places. However when they started writing the report and coming up with the criteria, this is what they did not explain very well to the public,” he said.

At the same time, he emphasised the need for the appointments to the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) to be hastened.

Prof Gumbe said that this was the only way that the new Constitution will be implemented.

He however stated that proper vetting should take place with emphasis put on character and past records of individuals.

“This matter has raised a storm because the deadline for the appointment of the CIC was not met. It is very important that this commission be in place for it is the one tasked with supervising and coordinating the implementation of the Constitution,” he said. “Despite that, it is also important that proper vetting of nominees be done.”

He called for the consideration of younger people to be part of the committee.

“Why must it be Micah Cheserem all the time? Why must it be those people we are seeing on the list all the time? Can we as a country not use all this other talent that we have?” he posed.

“We have a lot of young women especially and a lot of younger men who can do the job very well.”

Last week, Members of Parliament frustrated the adoption of nominees to the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution and the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA).

The lawmakers, who had earlier threatened to block adoption of the names to the crucial committees, argued that the composition did not portray proper regional representation.

The Motion was won after the House went into division, where MPs who were supportive of the adjournment Motion garnered 91 votes against 44 while there were eight abstentions.

Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale moved the adjournment Motion on the debate to approve the nominees to CRA after the members disagreed on the committee’s decision to drop Amina Ahmed on the basis that she could not defend documents supporting her CV.


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