, NAIROBI, Kenya, July 2- County Governors on Wednesday moved to court seeking orders to allow them fly the national flag on their official vehicles.
The Council of Governors lodged an urgent application contesting the recent move by President Uhuru Kenyatta to sign into law the National Flag Emblems and Names Amendment Act 2014 which prohibits governors from flying the national flag.
According to the governors, the legislation passed by the National Assembly is unconstitutional since the national flag promotes national unity at the county level in accordance with Article 174 of the Constitution.
The governors wanted Justice Isaac Lenaola who heard the application to declare the matter urgent and restrain the police and the Director of Public Prosecutions from arresting and prosecuting any governor who contravenes the new law.
Through their lawyer, the governors say the national flag symbol rallies around as part of celebrations of patriotism or aspiring nationalism such as independence and autonomy designed to be inclusive and representative of all the people.
The Act states that the national flag will only be flown by the President, Deputy President, Cabinet Secretaries, the Chief Justice, Speakers of both Houses and diplomats in Kenya’s foreign missions.
They argue the legislation passed by the National Assembly is unconstitutional.
They said when they were sworn into office on March 27, 2013 the Transitional Authority allowed them to fly national flags on their official cars.
The governors say the national flag symbolises patriotism or aspiring nationalism such as independence and autonomy designed to be inclusive and representative of all the people.
Contravention of the new Act attracts a fine of Sh1 million or imprisonment for a maximum of five years or both.
Pending hearing and determination of the dispute, the petitioners wants the High Court to issue orders suspending the implementation of the Act on grounds there is eminent risk that governors will be arrested by police and prosecuted on account of the unconstitutional legislation.
Justice Lenaola directed the Council of governors to serve the application on the Inspector General of Police, DPP, the National Assembly and Attorney General to facilitate inter-partes hearing on Monday.