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CIC commissioners reject bid to extend term

01 October 2015, 09:38 Samuel Kisika

Nairobi – The Commission of Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) officials have rejected a Senate committee’s plea to extend their term in office.

The CIC chairman, Charles Nyachae and his team who appeared before the Senate Legal Affairs and Human Rights committee, told the senators that they have discharged their five-year oversight duties of ensuring that the Constitution is lawfully implemented.

Nyachae said that although the Constitution has not been fully implemented within their term set to expire on December 29, the commissioners’ decision to vacate office aims at giving other Kenyans a chance to serve at the commission though the National Assembly plans to extend their term.

“The big question that both Parliaments should be concerned about is how the momentum of implementation of the Constitution is going to be sustained beyond the life of CIC even if the National Assembly is empowered to extend the commission’s term from five to seven years,” said Nyachae.

Read Also: Githu, Nyachae given 40 days to prepare Gender Bill

He told senators not to worry about the composition of CIC when commissioners’ term elapses and they willingly vacate from office, and instead told them to concentrate on their responsibility of informing Kenyans on the progress made in the implementation of the Constitution and need to extend the commission’s term.

“We don’t want to personalize the commission and our move to step aside is for National Assembly to purely make objective and fair decision of either extending CIC’s period or not. I will laud the National Assembly for extending the commission’s term but if asked to remain in office, personally I will say I have discharged my duties and allow other Kenyans to serve,” said Nyachae.

The CIC vice chair, Elizabeth Muli raised the concern that whenever the commission pointed out that certain legislations pertaining to counties had not been fully implemented, they were accused of demanding CIC’s term be extended for them to remain in office.

“There was an omission in the CIC Act administrative provision regarding the officials’ handover when their term expires and Parliament should do some amendment to it,” said Muli.

It therefore means the commissioners’ move to vacate office when their term expires will mark the end of CIC if Parliament does not promptly put in place some legislative measures such as setting up a secretariat to ensure the commission remains operational.

The Senate’s Legal Affairs and Human Rights committee chair Amos Wako, his deputy Stephen Sang, Senator Mutula Kilonzo Jr (Makueni), Kembi Gitura (Murang’a) and Fatuma Dullo (nominate) commended and persuaded the CIC commissioners to remain in office with the extension of their commission’s term, but their persuasion fell on deaf ears.

The commissioners revealed that 80% of some enacted legislation lack implementation regulations and accused ministries and Parliament for failure in ensuring the that the Executive fast-tracks implementation of their enacted laws.    

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