Kisumu follows Siaya to pass BBI bill

Wednesday, February 10th, 2021 00:00 |
Kisumu County Assembly Ward Reps during a session yesterday when they passed the BBI draft bill. Photo/PD/viola kosome

Kisumu County Assembly yesterday became the second to pass the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Amendment Bill, after Siaya on the day various Ward Reps began scrutinising it.

Members of the County Assembly unanimously approved the Bill, following a debate during the first sitting of the House on yesterday, after the long recess.

The Justice and Legal affairs Committee chairman Seth Okumu, told the assembly that the report had met the threshold,  as it captured the views of members of the public.

Okumu said members of the public were in agreement with the draft document proposals.

“It was the prayer of Kisumu residents that the assembly passes the bill, to pave way for further actions on the constitutional amendments,” said Okumu.

Subjected to scrutiny

On Tuesday last week, the assembly convened a Special Sitting, where the BBI draft bill was tabled and read for the first time before being commited to the committee.

Majority Leader Kenneth Onyango, noted that an equivalent autonomy for MCAs will strengthen their oversight roles going forward.

Kondele MCA Joachim Oketch noted that the MCAs have read and understood the document, contrary to the perception in the public domain that they are ignorant about it.

In Homa Bay, the county assembly is expected to pass the BBI law tomorrow, after concluding the public participation exercise.

Speaker Elizabeth Ayoo said an advertisement on the public participation was amended to bring the deadline to Wednesday.  

According to the dictates of the law, the referendum bill, must be passed by at least 24 counties before it proceeds to Parliament for further debate.

In Nairobi, the County Assembly said the Bill will first be subjected to scrutiny before it is passed.

Though the Ward Reps promised to pass it before the end of next week, Majority whip Paul Kados said the document will be subjected to a serious committee process.                                 

“As an assembly, we have resolved to commit it first to the committee, then we will  let our electorates know about it as we get their views.

Then our Justice and Legal Affairs Committee will take over the process ahead,” said Kados.

Deliberate on bill

On his part, Assembly Majority Leader Abdi Guyo revealed that the Bill, will be given priority in their meetings to ensure it has sailed through.

In Nyeri county, the draft Bll which was tabled at the assembly, was referred to the Legal Affairs committee,  which will have 14 days to scrutinise and subject it to public participation,  before it is debated in the plenary.

Speaker John Kaguchia urged the House to dispense with the Bill and exercise their constitutional mandate.

In Mombasa and Kilifi , the county assemblies will deliberate on the document, before subjecting it to public participation.  

Kilifi Ward Reps yesterday engaged legal experts, to familiarise themselves with the contents of the document n before it goes for public participation.

A section of the Kilifi MCAs among them Ganda ward MCA Victor Mwaganda and Mwanamwinga MCAPascal Makanga Thuva, said the county will not hesitate to pass the Bill, as it will bring more resources to the grassroots.

“A lot of resources will be devolved to the counties, if we pass this Bill, so we will do all things possible, to ensure the public gets convinced to accept the bill,” said Makanga.

Kilifi county Chief Whip Alphonse Mwayaa hinted that the five days meeting was scheduled to arm members, with legal knowledge before they make a decision on the draft document.

The MCA’S meeting comes a few days after Deputy President William Ruto, made inroads at Kilifi, Mombasa and Kwale counties, where he held various empowerment projects with the youth and women groups.

“The public is intoxicated over BBI narratives, that’s why, we want to sensitise them before engaging in  public participation forums,” said Mwayaa.

In Kisii, County Assembly interim Speaker, Amos Onderi said the House, will subject the document to public participation before they decide its fate.

The Speaker said the House will give priority to the Public Participation Bill. —Report by Alvin Mwangi, David Musundi, Noven Owiti, Seth Mwaniki, Felix Yegon, Robert Ochoro and Harrison Kivisu  

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