MPs urged to avoid sideshows in House

January 17, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Jan 17 – The Parliamentary Caucus for Reform wants legislation anchoring the new Constitution prioritised above political issues like the withdrawal from the International Criminal Court when Parliament resumes sittings on Tuesday.

Caucus chairman Danson Mungatana on Monday raised the red flag that Motions leaning on political interests were threatening to overshadow the reason behind the early recall of the House.

Mr Mungatana said Motions meant to pull Kenya out of the International Criminal Court; disbandment the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission (KACC) and censure against PM Raila Odinga should wait until the legislations on Implementation of the Constitution are passed.

“We want to urge a calming down of nerves. All these Motions are all political in nature and they cannot be said to be urgent in any way."

The House has been recalled two months early to debate Bills relating to the Implementation of the Constitution but the ICC debate, fight against corruption and the divisions in Orange Democratic Movement have threatened to spill over to Parliament and overshadow the process.

He said time has come when Parliament must prioritise national matters.

A section of MPs allied to Eldoret North MP William Ruto have indicated they plan to push a Bill in Parliament to pull Kenya out of the ICC and stop the court from future investigations in the country.

Another group from ODM has threatened to bring an amendment to disband KACC on claims that it was targeting party members in the fight against graft after the charging of ODM chairman Henry Kosgey with abuse of office .

MPs David Ngugi and Martin Ogindo who accompanied Mr Mungatana challenged the Executive to focus on addressing pressing national matters and sideline the “politically motivated” debates.

“We must avoid a situation where we create an environment which is going to polarise the debate in Parliament and deny Kenyans what they elected us to do,” said Mr Ogindo.
"What is more important is to take care of those threatened by the ravaging drought, farmers whose produce is getting spoilt and those parents whose children cannot secure a place in secondary school."

"The time to settle political scores is not far, we only have 18 months to the next election,” said Mr Mungatana.

Still in Parliament, two allies of Prime Minister Raila Odinga have dismissed Mr Ruto\’s call for generational leadership change.

Gwasi MP John Mbadi argued that Mr Ruto, and his allies Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka and Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta were part of the KANU regime which blocked the clamour for reforms and the course for the new Constitution.

“These people who were fighting change then, how soon have they become more youthful than that time?” Mr Mbadi posed.

The three leaders have announced they will be working together in a plan seen as meant to weaken Mr Odinga’s 2012 Presidential ambitions.

Rarieda MP Nicholas Gumbo now wants Mr Odinga to officially kick out Mr Ruto\’s group in a bid to stabilise the party.

“This is unacceptable and we think that the time for action is now. ODM cannot move forward if there is no discipline, if there is no order and respect for the leadership of the party,” he claimed


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