Uhuru still President, was right to convene Parliament – Duale

August 25, 2017 1:48 pm
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Speaking during a news conference at Parliament Buildings, Duale led a section of newly elected Jubilee Party MPs in declaring there is no vacuum in the Presidency until the next President is sworn-in/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 25 – National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale has come to the defence of President Uhuru Kenyatta over his decision to call first sitting of the 12th Parliament.

Speaking during a news conference at Parliament Buildings, Duale led a section of newly elected Jubilee Party MPs in declaring there is no vacuum in the Presidency until the next President is sworn-in.

“There is no vacuum that exists in the Office of the President. Until Article 142(1) is achieved and a new President is declared, there is a President in place and he will exercise all the authority that is accorded to him,”

Article 142 further clarifies that the President shall hold office for a term beginning on the date on which the President was sworn-in, and ending when the person next elected is sworn-in.

The Garissa Township MP said the threat by NASA MPs to boycott their swearing in ceremony is moot, ill-advised, dishonest and devoid of worth.

“You are the elected MP; somebody who has lost cannot direct you not to attend your own swearing-in. It is like somebody telling you not to attend your wedding. It’s absurd to plan your wedding and then on the day you are supposed to tie the knot, and the Bishop is there; but then some character, who was not even a member of the wedding steering committee comes and tells you boycott… do not go ahead and tie the knot,” said the Majority Leader.

“NASA is a coalition that does not respect the law and therefore their boycott is akin to telling a bride not to attend her wedding,” he said.

President Kenyatta on Thursday gazetted August 31 as the date for the first sitting of the 12th Parliament.

MPs allied to the National Super Alliance (NASA) have vowed to stay away from the first sitting of Parliament until the Supreme Court makes a decision on the legality of President Kenyatta’s election.

Duale said that the presidential petition had no relation to the operations within Parliament adding that NASA MPs will boycott the sitting at ‘their own peril.’

“The presidential petition in the Supreme Court has no association whatsoever with the operations and functions of Parliament. As you may be aware the ability to entrench principle of separation of powers is one of the well celebrated achievements of our Constitution,” said Duale. “We are not part of that petition as MPs.”

Judgment in the presidential petition filed by NASA leader Raila Odinga is expected by September 1.

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