NAIROBI Kenya, Dec 18 – A section of Jubilee Members of Parliament on Thursday accused their Opposition counterparts of being insensitive over the current security situation in the country.
They claimed the chaos witnessed in Parliament Thursday morning was well planned in a bid to derail the government in its efforts to curb insecurity threats, more so from terrorists.
Those who spoke to journalists called for soberness saying the matter is of national interest.
“Their issue is not about coming up with an amicable solution but it’s about heckling and causing chaos which is not acceptable,” Ol Kalou Member of Parliament David Kiaraho stated.
“We are more intelligent than that. This is a very unfortunate situation yet we are dealing with a very serious situation concerning our country.”
Another added, “Maybe there were some clauses which are a bit defective but I can guarantee you that the various committee sat down yesterday and came to agreement over all those issues.”
Kisumu Town East Members of Parliament Shakeel Shabbir on his part defended the taunts by CORD MPs in Parliament saying they only needed more time to study the proposed amendments in the security bill.
“The most important thing was to be given time to rationalise this so that we can understand the amendments that were made,” he said.
He urged the Majority Leader to, “give other people opportunity to discuss the Bill.”
Nandi Hills MP Alfred Keter however says both side should work together and make sure the proposed law does not infringe on the rights of the public.
“We need a lot of leadership in this country… all Kenyans want security,” he said. “We need to sit and come up with a level ground where we can all agree.”
He said some Members of Parliament physically assaulted CORD Senators who were in the Speaker’s gallery.
A host of joint missions including the United States and the United Kingdom have backed the government’s move to review the country’s security laws promising to help in the fight against terrorism.
In a statement signed by Ambassadors and High commissioners from nine countries, the missions urged members of the National Assembly to carefully review the Security Laws (Amendment) Bill 2014 to ensure that it respects human rights and international obligations.
“We welcome the effort by the Government of Kenya to revise and update the country’s security legislation. We encourage Kenya’s elected officials to take the time to review carefully the Bill now before the National Assembly and to consult broadly to build consensus-protecting Kenya’s Constitution and upholding civil liberties and democracy are among the most effective ways to bolster security,” read part of the statement.
Some of the key proposals made in the Bill include giving the National Intelligence Service (NIS) power to arrest, detain and interrogate suspected terrorists, the removal of security of tenure for the Inspector General of Police, the deputies and also the Director of Criminal Investigation thereby giving the President the power to appoint and allowing the admissibility of digital photographs in court.