Petitioners seek to have 12th parliament dissolved

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Nairobi,KENYA: Two citizens have filed a petition to the chief justice David Maraga to advise president Uhuru Kenyatta to dissolve parliament over failure to pass two-thirds gender rule that is enshrined in the constitution of Kenya.

The two, Honorable Stephen Owoko and John Wangai as 1st and 2nd petitioners respectively, drew the attention of the chief justice pursuant to article 26(7) of the constitution and high court ruling by Justice John Mativo on March 2017, that if the gender principle had not been implemented by June that year, anyone could write to the chief justice to advise the president to dissolve the parliament.

The two also say in their petition that, article 261 of the constitution of Kenya 2010 stipulate that there is 48 consequential legislation that should be passed by parliament within a specific time frame to govern a particular matter.

“The constitution is the grand norm and the supreme law of the land and that it was voted overwhelmingly by Kenyans in the year 2010 and should be respected as it represents the decision of the majority of Kenyans,” Part of the petition read.

They argued that 47 of the 48 consequential legislations were passed and one remaining has taken a lot of time to enact and implement so as to be in conformity with the constitution.

“That Article 81(b) enshrines that there should be no more than two-thirds of the members of elective public bodies of the same gender something that parliament has continued to violate,” They wrote.

They also indicated that in 2015 High court Judge Mumbi Ngugi ordered the then Attorney General Pro. Githu Muigai and the commission for implementation of the constitution to prepare and table the law for legislation but as the court process went on, several attempts to have a law failed in parliament, mostly due to quorum hitches.

This comes after the parliament on Wednesday this week failed to pass the Two-third gender rule and opt to postpone the voting till February next year of 2019 for lack of quorum.

The legislators were expected to either endorse or reject the bill. The bill required the support of 233 MPs (two-thirds of all the members) to pass.

If it sails through the House and is assented to by the President, it will be effective after the 2022 General Election.

Currently, there are 76 women in the National Assembly — 23 elected MPs, 47 woman representatives, and six nominated MPs. The Senate has 21 women —19 nominated and three elected members. The National Assembly has 349 members while the Senate has 67.

Marjority leader in the national assembly and the sponsor of the bill Aden Duale has maintained that it is crucial for the 12th Parliament to safeguard the Constitution by endorsing the bill.

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