, KITALE, Kenya, Feb 9 – Prime Minister Raila Odinga on Thursday urged Kenyans not to be anxious about the date of next elections saying he and President Kibaki will act in the best interest of the country on the matter.
Talking after a meeting with elders from Trans Nzoia County at the Kitale Club, the PM said the principals will consider the country’s preparedness for the elections while determining the date.
Odinga said the country should leave it to them to decide after the court ruled that dissolution of the coalition government could pave way for an early election.
In the alternative, the expiry of Parliament’s term on January 15 will automatically lead to an election in March next year.
His remarks come only hours after the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) said it will write to him and the president requesting them dissolve the coalition government by October to pave way for a December poll. Read about IEBC’s petition here.
On Tuesday, Parliament called on Kenyans to give their views on the Constitutional Amendment Bill seeking to change the election date. The Bill is awaiting debate in the House.
The Bill wants the date of the next General Elections designated as December 17, 2012 and that of the subsequent polls to be moved from “the second Tuesday in August” as stipulated in the Constitution, to the “third Monday in December” every fifth year.
The Clerk of the National Assembly, Patrick Gichohi, urged the public to send in their memoranda on what they think about the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, which also seeks to find a mechanism of rolling out the two-thirds gender cap for the next Parliament.
The public hearings are to be carried out at provincial headquarters to ensure that the MPs are made aware of what the public thinks about the Cabinet-sponsored amendment.
Garissa, Mombasa, Nyeri, Embu, Nakuru, Kisumu, Kakamega and Nairobi have been chosen as centres for public hearings.
The Constitutional Implementation Oversight Committee will then be expected to prepare a report, which will then be submitted to the House for adoption, before the debate begins.