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BBI validation hearings kicks off next week in Nairobi

BBI taskforce Chairperson Yusuf Haji. /CFM-FILE.

NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 1 – The Steering Committee on the implementation of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Report will start validation hearings on Wednesday at the Kenya International Convention Centre (KICC) in Nairobi.

In a statement, the taskforce invited diverse representation from all citizens and urged the public to attend the meetings.

“These meetings will welcome representation of all citizens, civil society, the faith-based organizations, cultural leaders, the private sector among others,” the statement states in part.

The committee said that the KICC meetings will be followed by other meetings in different regions come March on dates to be communicated later.

It further called on the organizers of the ongoing BBI forums to respect the freedom of expression of all participants.

“The steering committee welcomes invitation of its technical experts and members to attend forums or town-hall meetings by groups wishing to constructively present their views on the BBI task force report,” it states.

“The committee will give due consideration to all invitations that adhere to the criteria that will be given to the organization committee. We urge the organizers of all the forums to respect freedom of expression of all participants.”

The task force is expected to submit a final report to the government by June 30.

The fourth BBI forum spearheaded by ODM Leader Raila Odinga will take place in Kitui on Saturday where leaders from across the political divide are expected to attend.

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Earlier, Deputy President William Ruto urged politicians not to make the Building Bridges Initiative discussions about political positions at the expense of the needs of Kenyans.

He said it would be selfish for politicians to focus on the needs of a few politicians while ignoring the needs of millions of people.

Every Kenyan, he added, irrespective of his or her status in the society, should be given a chance to give his or her views on BBI.

“We must have a balanced debate; it cannot be about leaders and positions. It must also be about ordinary people, their challenges, and opportunities,” said Ruto who is seen as largely isolated in government lately due to his stand in the BBI, which has strained his relationship with President Uhuru Kenyatta, who is rarely seen with him in public meetings, including in Nakuru this week.

Ruto’s allies led by Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen have announced plans to hold parallel BBI rallies in various counties, starting with Nakuru county next week.


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