, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 23 – President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday assented to seven Bills including the Bribery Bill 2016 which was passed by the National Assembly early this month.
The principal objective of the Bribery Act 2016 is to extend the fight against corruption to the private sector by equally criminalizing bribery in the sector.
It provides for specific requirements that private entities must have in place in the prevention of bribery.
The Act also provides for an effective co-ordination and accountability framework in the prevention, investigation and prosecution of acts of bribery.
It creates legal obligation for every person who becomes aware of an act of bribery to report the matter to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission.
President Kenyatta also signed into law the Witness Protection (Amendment) Bill 2016 which amends the Witness Protection Act and aligns it with the Constitution by providing for reciprocal protection arrangements with foreign countries to ensure effective operationalisation of the Act.
It gives the Attorney General power to appoint the Director of the Witness Protection Agency on the recommendation of the Witness Protection Advisory Board.
It also provides for the Witness Protection Agency to be funded out of the Consolidated Fund as well as receive grants and donations from other lawful sources.
The President also assented to the Competition (Amendment) Bill 2016, the Contempt of Court Bill 2016, the Universities (Amendment) Bill 2015, the Insurance (Amendment) Bill 2016 and the Kenya Defence Forces (Amendment) Bill 2015.
The Competition (Amendment) Act 2016 amends the Competition Act 2010 to enhance consumer protection from unfair and misleading market conduct while the Contempt of Court Act 2016 defines what ‘Contempt of Court’ is and provides for the High Court to punish for contempt in subordinate courts among other things.
The Universities (Amendment) Act 2015 amends the Universities Act 2012 so as to streamline the operation of the Act with on-going practical realities in the country’s education system.
It empowers the Commission for University Education to accredit universities and approve university programmes as well as empower the President to revoke a university’s Charter after approval from the Commission for University Education.
The Insurance (Amendment) Act 2016 amends the Insurance Act to enhance insurance business in the country while the Kenya Defence Forces (Amendment) Act 2015 amends the Kenya Defence Forces Act 2012 to ensure orderly and efficient governance of the KDF.
Deputy President William Ruto witnessed the signing of the Bills which were presented to President Kenyatta by National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi and Clerk Justin Bundi.
Also present were National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale and Solicitor General Njee Muturi.