Senators urge MPs to fast-track Bill seeking to resolve boundary rows

Monday, November 29th, 2021 07:29 |
Homa Bay Senator Moses Kajwang’. Photo/PD/FILE

Senators have asked their colleagues at the National Assembly to expedite consideration of a Bill seeking to resolve and review boundary disputes pitting various counties.

County Boundaries Bill, which has already been passed by Senate, seeks to give effect to Article 188 of the Constitution by providing a mechanism for alteration of boundaries by establishing an independent county boundaries commission.

Boundary disputes have been reported in at least 15 counties, which the government has attributed to political provocations, interference and scramble for revenue collection among other issues.

Lawmakers warned that the disputes might degenerate into full-blown ethnic clashes if not addressed before the high stakes 2022 General Election. While the Constitution mandates the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission to review constituency and ward boundaries, it does not extend the same role when it comes to county boundaries.

Article 188 (b) (i) (ii) of the Constitution states that boundaries of a county may be altered only by a resolution recommended by an independent commission set up by Parliament.

Senate Committee on Devolution and Intergovernmental that has been probing various county boundary disputes has concluded that there is currently no legal framework for the review of the boundaries unless the National Assembly fast-tracks the Bill.

“That the National Assembly priorities and expedites consideration of the County Boundaries Bill, Senate Bills No. 20 of 2021 to provide an avenue for the review of County boundary disputes,” the committee chaired by Homa Bay Senator Moses Kajwang’ (pictured)said in its report to the House.

More on News