Jubilee unveils team to face Cord on IEBC stalemate

The Jubilee Government has named Meru County Senator Kiraitu Murungi team leader of Joint Select Committee to dialogue with the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (Cord) over the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) stalemate.

Yesterday, President Kenyatta in his address revealed that following consultations with Speakers of the Senate and the National Assembly and religious leaders at State House, it was resolved that a team from both houses of Parliament spearhead talks that would seek to end the current impasse on IEBC. President Kenyatta said that in accordance with the standing orders of both Houses of Parliament, all stakeholders, public and private should be accorded an opportunity to make submissions to the joint select committee.

Others nominated by the Jubilee wing as part of the delegation are Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, Nominated Senator Beatrice Elachi, Nominated Senator Fatuma Dullo, Runyenjes legislator Cecile Mbarire and Deputy Majority Leader in Parliament Naomi Shaaban.

Gatundu South Member of Parliament Moses Kuria, Kitutu Chache MP Jimmy Angweyi, Mumias East constituency’s Ben Washiali, Mandera West MP Eng. Mohammed Mahmoud and Narok County MP Soipan Tuya also made the cut at the Parliamentary group meeting earlier today.

President Uhuru Kenyatta was scheduled to chair a Parliamentary Group meeting of the Jubilee coalition this morning to agree who will represent the coalition in the joint select committee that will collect views on the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) impasse.

On Wednesday, President Kenyatta announced formation of the Joint Select Committee of both Houses of Parliament, signalling an end to the stalemate that had threatening to get out of hand.

He made the announcement after a meeting with religious leaders and Speakers from both the Senate and National Assembly.

During the meeting, the Head of State emphasised the need to forge ahead on the issue but within the confines of the Constitution.

He had made it clear that everyone needs to respect, uphold and defend the Constitution describing it “as an obligation and not an option.”

The unveiling of team comes hot on the heels of Cord leader Raila Odinga’s declarion that the anti- IEBC protests would continue and beginning next week, will be held on Monday and Thursday. Earlier, Interior CS Joseph Nkaisery had outlawed the demonstrations and had vowed to have the Opposition leaders face the law if they demonstrated.

In a swift rejoinder, Cod leadership said, the President in trying to outlaw protests had suspended the operation of Articles 37 and 38 of the Constitution and delimited their enjoyment by any Kenyan until further notice. Article 37 guarantees the freedom of assembly, demonstration, picketing and petition. Article 38 on the other hand guarantees political rights.

Under Article 37, every person has the right, peaceably and unarmed to present petitions to public authorities. Under Article 38, every citizen is free to make political choices which include the right to participate in the activities of a political party and to campaign for a political party or cause.

By suspending articles 37 and 38 of the Constitution through the CS, President Uhuru Kenyatta effectively declared a State of Emergency in Kenya. The leaders went on to note that the Constitution is clear as to how the President can bring into force a State of Emergency.

With the CORD side already having selected its nominees led by Senator James Orengo, the quest for an amicable solution to the IEBC standoff could begin as early as Monday next week.

 

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