NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 24 – Kericho and Wajir counties approved the Building Bridges Initiative constitutional amendment Bill on Wednesday joining 38 other county assemblies which had approved the proposed review of the constitution.
Kericho Members of County Assembly adopted the Bill in a vote by acclamation. Wajir MCAs passed the law review Bill citing increased devolved allocations as proposed in the document.
With forty counties having adopted the Bill and Baringo County Assembly voting to reject it, there are six county legislative bodies which are yet to vote on the Bill.
They are Nandi, Uasin Gishu, Elgeyo Marakwet ,Turkana, Kilifi and Mandera.
Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Party Leader Raila Odinga who is on the frontline championing for the Constitutional Amendment Bill alongside President Uhuru Kenyatta hailed the MCAs saying their resounding support will ensure prosperity and equitable sharing of the same.
“County assemblies have been able to push back a year-long campaign of lies, misinformation and undue influence on a document whose centerpiece is ensuring prosperity and equitable sharing of the same.
With the dramatic and strong conclusion of the exercise today, we are extremely close to giving our people the reforms they need to create a united, inclusive, stable and prosperous nation that also deals decisively with the crime of corruption,” Odinga said in a statement.
BBI was borne out of a March 2018 truce between President Kenyatta and Odinga which ended hostilities sparked by the latter’s rejection of the 2017 presidential election outcome.
The Bill proposes the expansion of the National Executive by adding the Office of the Prime Minister and two deputies in a bid to foster inclusivity of all Kenyans at the executive level.
Critics of the document have decried the expansion of the executive saying the move will overburden taxpayers who will be highly taxed to fund salaries and office expenditures.
Deputy President William Ruto has remained skeptical on the need to review the constitution under BBI and has consistently rooted for consensus in order to avert a divisive referendum.
He is yet to comment on the overwhelming support BBI has received from MCAs.
The DP had suggested that a multiple-question referendum be held alongside the 2022 general elections
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission has estimated the cost of a plebiscite in June at Sh14 billion.