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June 19| President Uhuru Kenyatta during a webinar hosted by the Atlantic Council themed "strengthening US-Africa ties through trade" at State House, Nairobi/PSCU

BBI

Kenyatta says committed to term limits, steers clear of premiership debate

NAIROBI, Kenya June 19 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has reiterated his commitment to presidential limits amid speculations the review of term limits  could be part of the Building Bridges Initiative constitutional review agenda.

During a webinar hosted by the Atlantic Council under the theme, “strengthening US-Africa ties through trade,” President Kenyatta assured that he will neither contravene the existing two-term limit nor alter the length of a presidential term from the current five years.

“It is unfortunate that some people have misinterpreted the scenario of a referendum to change a constitution to mean that certain individuals want to change that Constitution to extend presidential term,” he said.

“If there is one thing, Kenyans are clear about since 1992 when we introduced multiparty  is the two- term limit and there is no single president who has broken that, and I do not intend to be the first,” the President added.

He, however remained noncommittal on premiership which is part of the proposals in the Bomas BBI draft spearheaded by President Kenyatta and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga.

Kenyatta said he could not comment on a position which does not exist in the constitution and which he was not certain will be included in proposed constitutional amendments.

“I have no clue whether there is going to be premiership in the constitution. I have not heard of any other issues. I cannot comment on what is not a principal issue of the Building bridges initiative,” he said.

Kenyatta noted that “people are interested in value of vote, distribution of resources and inclusivity in government .

“I have not heard of any other issues,” Kenyatta said during the forum convened Thursday.

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The BBI was launched during following a truce between President Kenyatta and Odinga on March 9 after a divisive presidential election in 2017.

A 14-member taskforce chaired by Garissa Senator Yusuf Haji which was mandated to collect views on possible changes to be made on the Constitution (2010) is expected to file its second report following the collusion of validation hearings on March 13.

The BBI taskforce held consultations with a cross section of citizens, civil society, the faith-based organisations, cultural leaders, the private sector and experts.

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