Senate passes controversial Election Laws

Busia senator Amos Wako during a past briefing PHOTO: COURTESY.

Nairobi, KENYA: The Senate on Thursday voted to adopt amendments to the election laws as passed by the National Assembly.

Twenty-four senators voted for the bill, while 19 voted against it during its second reading.

“The ayes 24, the nays are 19, abstentions nil; the ayes have it,” Speaker Ekwee Ethuro said when voting concluded.

The Senate committee on legal affairs committee had earlier on Thursday adopted the controversial election laws after holding a public hearing.

According to the committee chairman members of public and other interested parties including The Independent Electrol and Bounderies Commission (IEBC), Attony general, Chambers of commerce, political parties, council of governors among others made written submission to the committee on the controversial amendments.

When tabling the report in Senate, the committee’s chair Amos Wako said members of the committee adopted the amendment to the election law after 10 senators voted for changes while 6 voted against.

He said the committee resorted to voting after senators failed to reach a consensus on the controversial amendments.

There was a heated debate as Senators retreated to their party cocoons as they debated a divisive report on the contentious Election Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2015.

The election laws amendments allow for a manual back up system to be in place in the coming General Elections.