Order, hon. Members! Before we proceed to the next business on the Order Paper, I have a Communication to make. Hon. Members, it is with profound grief and shock that we learnt of the sad news of the sudden and untimely deaths of Mr. Kipkalya Kiprono Kones, the Minister for Roads, and the hon. Member of Parliament for Bomet Constituency, Ms. Lorna Chepkemoi Laboso, the Assistant Minister, Office of the Vice-President and Ministry of Home Affairs, and hon. Member for Sotik Constituency, a security officer and a pilot following an air crash in Enoosupukia Forest near Kanjong'a Village in Narok District on Tuesday, 10th June, 2008 at around 2.30 p.m. The late Kones was born on 22nd February, 1952 in Bomet District and made his debut to Parliament in 1988 as the hon. Member of Parliament for Bomet Constituency. The late Kones was first elected to Parliament during the General Election of 1988 and subsequently retained his seat in 1118 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES June 11, 2008 the General Elections of 1992 and 1997. He was nominated to Parliament by FORD(P) in 2003. He recaptured his Bomet seat during the General Election of 2007 on an ODM ticket, and was subsequently appointed the Minister for Roads last April in the Grand Coalition Government. Hon. Members, during his Parliamentary career, he served in the Ministry of Agriculture as an Assistant Minister from 1989 to 1992, and as a Minister in the Office of the President between 1993 and January, 1997. He was the Minister for Public Works and Housing between 1998 and May, 2002 and more recently was Minister for Roads from April, 2008, a position he held until his sad demise. The late Kones will be remembered for his commitment to the service of his constituents and Kenyans in general as demonstrated by his involvement in the famous IPPG meetings in 1997. He provided an uninterrupted service to this House for the last two decades, during which time he was always warm, honest, humble, charming and full of smiles. Although he was a man his friends could rely on, the late Kones did not mind disagreeing with anybody, if he thought it was necessary to state a contrary opinion, and was prepared to bear the consequences of such disagreements. Hon. Members, the late hon. Lorna Chepkemoi Laboso was born on the 8th of November, 1961 in the then larger Kericho District. She made her debut to Parliament after the General Election of 2007 on the Orange Democratic Party (ODM) ticket. She was subsequently appointed an Assistant Minister in the Grand Coalition Government. Before being elected to Parliament, the late Member had worked in the horticultural industry and served as director in the Postal Corporation of Kenya; from 2003 to 2006. Within her short career as a parliamentarian, the late Member actively campaigned for the protection of vulnerable people such as women and children through empowerment. She was particularly interested in girl child education. Hon. Members, our Parliament has again faced another tragic loss at a time when two vacancies occasioned by the deaths of our two colleagues are yet to be filled. In honour of our departed colleagues and in order to mourn with the families, friends, constituents and Kenyans during this trying period, I will be calling upon the Leader of Government Business to make a statement on the business before the House. Hon. Members, on behalf of the House and, indeed, on my own behalf, I send our heartfelt condolences to the families, relatives, friends, constituents and the people of Kenya for the sad demise of the two leaders. May the Almighty God grant comfort to the bereaved and give them strength to bear the great loss. May God rest their souls in eternal peace. Amen. Hon. Members, those who are at the Bar at the entrance may come in. Please, proceed!
Hon. Members, in honour of our departed colleagues, I will request that we all stand up to observe a minute of silence in their honour.
May God rest their souls in peace. You may be seated.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, in accordance with the provisions of Standing Order No.22, I beg to move the following Motion:- THAT, this House do now adjourn until tomorrow in the afternoon when we come to listen to the Budget Speech. Mr. Speaker, Sir, this Motion is enforced by the sobering reality that faces our country today following the untimely death of two of our colleagues in the plane tragedy to which you have already referred in your Communication from the Chair. Although I had occasion to send my message of condolences, I thought that this morning all of us could stand in solidarity with the families of our departed colleagues as well as their constituents in Bomet and Sotik constituencies. Mr. Speaker, Sir, indeed, in my own mind, it is very difficult for the House to continue with its usual exuberance debating matters that are before this House today given the sad reality that faces this nation. Therefore, once again, I want to send my heartfelt condolences on behalf of the Ministry which has lost a brilliant Assistant Minister. The hon. Lorna Laboso was a source of inspiration to all of us in the Ministry. As I said, only recently she was able to go down to South Africa to represent me at an international conference dealing with prison services and performed so brilliantly on behalf of this country. She was yet to present her findings to me because we were faced with the prison crisis. She and I visited Thika Prison and she gave that approach of a caring Kenyan mother even as we faced with the hard reality of the state of our prisons. She was cheerful, dedicated and clearly with a great potential. Therefore, the cruel hand of death has robbed us, as a nation, of the services of one who we clearly needed at the prime of her youth and a lot was expected of her. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I had occasion to refer to my brother and colleague, hon. Kipkalya Kones. I now know that both hon. Kones and I, attempted to come to this august House in 1983. But both of us, did not succeed. That I succeeded slightly ahead of him in 1985 and he joined in 1988, is a fact that I have now realised after listening to your eulogy in a form of communication from the Chair. Hon. Kones was a fearless and trusted Kenyan leader who always stood firmly when it came to issues that affected his constituents and this nation. No wonder the people of Bomet and the larger Kericho districts looked at him as the leader. Whenever we went to Kapkatet this fact was always clearly elaborated by the people themselves. So, I can imagine the state of shock, not just in the greater Kericho, but in the whole country. Mr. Speaker, Sir, in honour of these departed colleagues, I want to appeal to all of us this morning to consider suspending the business of this House until tomorrow. If it was not for the fact that tomorrow is Budget Day, I would even have suggested that we really adjourn for three consecutive days in order to mourn with the families and constituents of our colleagues. Mr. Speaker, Sir, the Prime Minister has kindly agreed to second this Motion. I beg to move.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, at times like these, there is need for a nation to stand together. Once again, in a matter of days, disaster has hit this country so hard. At first, when I was informed of what had happened, I thought I was dreaming! It took some time for reality to dawn that the unexpected had happened. So, at a time like this, tempers would always fly high and people would quickly run to conclusions. Suggestions would be made as to the cause of the accident. But there is no doubt that this is one of the most devastating events that has taken place in our country after the post-election crisis. We have lost two of our closest friends. It is only last Saturday that we attended Ms. Laboso's homecoming ceremony. We had flown from South Africa together with Mr. Kones. We flew into Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) and he went by road. I went home to change and went to attend a funeral in Muhoroni. From Muhoroni, I went to Sotik to attend that ceremony 1120 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES June 11, 2008 before I came to Nairobi. I had pleaded with Ms. Laboso that I needed to be in Nairobi because there was a football match being played between Kenya and Guinea on that day. She agreed quickly and informed her guests that I had a very pressing matter and I needed to be excused. That was supposed to be a homecoming ceremony for Ms. Laboso to thank the people of Sotik for electing her as Member of Parliament. It also turned out to be a farewell to the people of Sotik. Ms. Laboso was a lady of exceptional courage. She was respected as the lioness of Kipsigis women, having been the first lady to be elected a Member of Parliament from that community. She had great ambitions! Sometime before last year, she had told me that she had gone back to the university to study and get a degree because she did not want to come to Parliament and be insulted by other hon. Members that she was not properly qualified. She knew what was possible and what was not. She knew her limits and that is why it is very painful that, after so much struggle, she had to die that young. Mr. Speaker, Sir, Mr. Kones was the first adversary-turned-friend. As the Leader of Government Business has said, Mr. Kones was a man of exceptional courage; a man who spoke his mind when it mattered. There were times when he was referred to as a "Kalenjin warrior" and he did not mind. He said: "If it is for the sake of my people that I am being referred to as a warrior, then, yes, I am prepared to carry on with the war on behalf of my people." We had an opportunity to work with Mr. Kones very closely. In recent times, before the dissolution of the Eighth Parliament, he had served briefly as my Assistant Minister in the then Ministry of Roads, Public Works and Housing. We worked very closely because he had been a Minister before in that Ministry and he knew a lot of things. Together, we were able to carry out several reforms in the Ministry. I always referred to him as lemenyi, meaning that he was my brother-in-law. That is because my sister-in-law is married in his family. Mr. Speaker, Sir, we had discussed so many issues with Mr. Kones. After he was appointed Minister for Roads, he came to my office and with his staff, explained the plans and his vision for the Ministry. He explained what he intended to do for this country. So, the Printed Estimates which have just been laid on the Table of the House include those for the Ministry of Roads. The estimates of the Ministry of Roads basically bear the thumbprint of Mr. Kones. Mr. Speaker, Sir, he had accompanied the President on a tour to Japan recently; the TIKAD Meeting. As he was going, I told him that I wanted him as soon as he arrived here to join me on a mission to South Africa, to attend the World Economic Forum. Some who had gone to Japan with him were so tired to make it to South Africa. But he arrived and the following day, he was on a plane down to Cape Town. In the Forum, he made a very positive contribution. The Kenyan delegation was hailed as the most organised and prepared delegation at that conference. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I remember one of the last things I did with him was when I was invited to go and meet with South African President, Mr. Thabo Mbeki. He was the Minister I chose to accompany me to that meeting. When I hosted the dinner for the delegates at the conference and I invited Kenyan Ministers to speak about their dockets, I had talked about the talents of Kenyan athletes. When he stood up there he said: "Those great runners come from my community." He amused the delegates by saying that he, himself, was also, once upon a time, a runner. So, I am saying that we have lost great friends; people who had great potential for this country and, therefore, our nation is moaning. We could not pay a better tribute than adjourning the affairs of this House today in honour of our two departed colleagues. Tragedy strikes without notice and misfortunes come in chains, as they say. As we were preparing for by-elections to fill the vacancies left by the deaths of two other hon. Members, on the eve of it, we are struck again by deaths of other two hon. Members. It could not be more painful. It is so painful and I want to thank all hon. Members who got the message yesterday and quickly came together. I want to announce here that, as we are sitting here, a team of some hon. Members June 11, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1121 have already gone down to the ground where the accident took place. Hon. Members may wonder why the bodies were not brought to Nairobi yesterday. I wish to say that by the time all the information came, it was getting late and it was also said that there was need to carry out proper investigations when the bodies were still on site. That is why it was agreed that the bodies will be guarded overnight. This morning, the team will go together with cameramen to remove the bodies and bring them. Mr. Speaker, Sir, so, a team of hon. Members led by Mr. Samoei has already gone to the site to bring the bodies. Investigations are also on hand. We set up a committee yesterday and we agreed that the committee organising the funeral of our two colleagues should be bipartisan. In other words, we should have hon. Members from ODM and PNU in that committee. We are going to carry out consultations to fully constitute the committee which will be announced in due course. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I wish to conclude by saying that the only fitting tribute that we can give to our departed colleagues, as a House, is to ensure that they get a decent and peaceful send-off. With those many remarks, I beg to second.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is, indeed, a sombre and a very sad moment for all of us to have learnt of a sudden demise of our colleagues, Mr. Kones and Ms. Laboso. These are people that I have known for a very long time. We have worked together at the Cabinet level and at the local level. Indeed, there were many occasions when the late Kones and I jokingly referred to each other Kones as "kamama", meaning that there was a very friendly and relatively good rapport between us. It is even more painful to remember that even in the midst of the clashes that we had recently Mr. Kones, Ms. Laboso, Mr. Ruto and I were able to sit down in very secluded moments in my office and reason together as to how we could resolve the problem that had occurred at our border. What we decided was, in fact, what happened. We walked along both sides of the border talking to our people and appealing to them that we were, indeed, one nation. That helped immensely in returning calm to our people. They played a major role in ensuring that both parties were fully in the picture. For me and this House, it is a loss that we can never forget. Mr. Speaker, Sir, recently His Excellency the President went to Chepilate and Kipkelion. You should have seen the happiness of the people, whom they represented, because they saw their leadership taking charge of their destiny. It is that type of leadership that this nation needs so much. In the heat of the moment, and in a crisis such as the one we had, people can come out and become true arbitrators in a situation of that magnitude. So, I stand here to say that it is only befitting that this honourable House expresses its magnanimous spirit by taking the remaining few hours of today to sympathise and empathise with the families of the late Mr. Kones and Ms. Laboso. They were my neighbours and we knew each other very well. Since last night, people from both sides are experiencing a total loss. They can hardly do anything at the moment until the nation collects itself together. It is a lesson to us, as hon. Members, that service to mankind, honesty and integrity can only be a virtues and not a disappointing attributes for any one of us. I want to appeal to all us that we honour them in the most befitting manner by adjourning the business of this House for the day .
Hon. Members, please note that its a tradition of this House that on Motions of this nature hon. Members contribute for a maximum of five minutes, so that a reasonable number can contribute. Further, note that it is the desire of the Chair that we adjourn at around 10.00 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to support the Motion of adjournment. Two things that 1122 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES June 11, 2008 come to mind when I think about the late Mr. Kones--- I have known him for about 15 years now. I knew him when we sat in opposite sides of the House. The Prime Minister has ably described him, about two things: He was courageous; he had the courage of a lion and the will of a principal. When he believed in something, it did not matter whether the rest of Parliamentarians thought otherwise; he stood by it. It did not matter whether the President was against him at that time, even if they belonged to the same party. I remember Mr. Kones standing up to the same regime that he served as a Minister. He stood up hard and firm for the principles he believed in. I served with him also in my previous party. He was the Chairman of FORD(P) and I was the Secretary-General. I also remember that he was a firm man. He was also a nationalist. When he served as a Minister in the Office of the President in charge of special programmes and drought recovery in those days he literally slept, walked and drove in every corner of North Eastern Province to see the plight of the people there. He took food to the hungry there. The man was a nationalist. I remember at one time that although we were in opposite sides, we were very close. I had a problem with the system and he had the courage to go to the former President and tell him that I was right in pushing for a national agenda that was in the interests of Kenyans, and that I should be supported. The President went ahead and instructed that the students whose admission to various institutions I was trying to push for should be admitted to those institutions; it did not matter that I was member of the Opposition. I have a very heavy heart. I have lost a friend, a brother and a colleague of many years. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I have also known the late Ms. Laboso. She was a tigress, as she was ably described. She has been a close friend of the late Mr. Kones. They have been together in politics and have shared a lot of good ideas. I had the opportunity and the chance and privilege to participate in some of their debates and get-togethers, both in Bomet and in Nairobi. The nation has lost two very able Kenyans and leaders, who were at the prime of their lives. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I think the nation has lost two very able Kenyans and leaders who were at the prime of their lives. This should serve as a reflection to Kenyans, as the Prime Minister has said. We need to reflect back. We need to look at many things in this country and see how we can use this opportunity to heal this country and bring it together because the late Minister believed in bringing the country together. He visited me in my office of the Deputy Speaker here on a number of occasions and every time it was how we can move forward, develop this country and deliver services that Kenyans badly need, and how can we can develop this country without taking a lot of time in this partisan politics. He agonised very much over the things that seem to bedevil our country in terms of issues of power and power games. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I think, it is befitting to his own memory if from this moment we dedicate ourselves to bringing this country together. This is what this country needs more than anything else. This country does not need a Government that is talking at cross purposes. This country needs a Government that works together and treats this country as one nation, a Government that is nationalistic, devoid of tribalism and all the other ills that divide us. Mr. Speaker, Sir, in honour of the late hon. Kones and the late hon. Laboso, we need to come together and use this as the turning moment. Mr. Speaker, Sir, with those few remarks, I beg to support this Motion.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I stand here to support the Motion of adjournment as moved by the Vice-President and Minister for Home Affairs and seconded by the Prime Minister. It is a sad moment for the people of Kenya this morning and yesterday afternoon. It is a sad moment to the people of the Rift Valley Province. It is shocking that our two colleagues, as they went to campaign for our departed colleagues, left us. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I worked with our two departed colleagues very closely. The late hon. Kipkalia Kones was a vibrant politician. He was a fearless man and eloquent speaker who used to June 11, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1123 put his messages across, no matter how others viewed his opinion. In 2002, both the late hon. Laboso and hon. Kones went against the grain in our great Rift Valley Province to stand on parties which we did not believe in at that time. But I believe that even if they lost elections, they came out victorious. This is because those who did not go with them went blindly to the Opposition. They saw the light at the end of the tunnel which we did not see as Members from the region. I want to say the late hon. Kones would put his career on the line to state exactly what he believed in. I know that the late hon. Kones stood for unity, the disadvantaged and the rights of all. He was a good leader. I was with him before he left for South Africa. He had promised that he was coming back to campaign in both Ainamoi and Kilogoris by-elections. I did not know that on his way to the final stretch of the Ainamoi by-elections, he was going to leave us. Mr. Speaker, Sir, the late Laboso was a good politician. She was ever happy, jovial and believed in herself. Being the first woman to be elected in the greater Kericho, the late Laboso gave other women the courage that it was possible to have a woman leader from the region. As we mourn the two leaders, we request that investigations into this incident be carried out thoroughly. The reports of these investigations should not be taken to the shelves where reports of other investigations have ended up. We lost Members in the Busia plane crash and we have never seen a report. We have also not seen subsequent investigations. We are always told that "investigations are going on". Police have kept secret even matters which we need to know as Kenyans. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I hope that you will take the lead to ensure that the reports of the investigations are made public through the Floor of this House. We stand together as the people of the Rift Valley Province and we stand together as the people of Kenya to mourn our two departed colleagues. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity. I stand here to speak about the two departed colleagues to whom I have special attachments. Mr. Speaker, Sir, last saturday I travelled to the late Laboso's homecoming function. She sent a message asking me to travel with the late hon. Kones to her home. Hon Kones was to arrive from South Africa. I missed the late hon. Kones and travelled by road to Narok. I awaited for the late Laboso there. She joined me and we travelled in a convoy to her home. On the same Saturday, four of us and a few other people from her home area, we had lunch with the Prime Minister and his wife. Later on, the late hon. Kones joined us. In fact, he was the one who invited me to give my speech in that function. Mr. Speaker, Sir, on Sunday, the late Laboso joined us at hon. Mwathi's homecoming party. Then, we agreed to meet in her office yesterday at 8.30 a.m. At exactly 8.25 a.m., the late Laboso called me and told me that she was still struggling with traffic and she would be in her office at a round 8.30 a.m. At 8.35 a.m., I arrived at her office and we were served with tea. I asked for a cup of milo. I want to confess that, in fact, she was the one who served me with that cup of milo. We had a chat and while we were talking, hon. Kones telephoned hon. Laboso. They talked about this trip and she made a joke to me by asking me to join them in that trip. I also made a joke by telling her that if I joined the trip, I would campaign for the PNU candidate but not their candidate. We ended our conversation there. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I stand here to say that from the time I came to this House, I found the late hon. Laboso to be a different person. She was an outgoing and clear minded person to her colleagues. She was a person of a very strong character. The same applies to Mr. Kones. The country is now on its knees, praying. I want to request all Kenyans to pray for their souls. May God rest their souls in eternal peace. It is my sincere hope, as my colleagues have said, that proper investigations will be conducted so as to come up with a conclusive report on what caused their deaths. We are not 1124 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES June 11, 2008 scared of dying, however, we do not want to die mysteriously. We want to die because God has called us into His Kingdom. With those few words, I support the Adjournment Motion.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I wish to support the Motion of Adjournment. The nation is in shock and mourning. As we rose yesterday, the news came to us and we were all in shock. I learnt of the death of Ms. Laboso and Mr. Kones from my sister Gloria Wamalwa. Gloria was Ms. Laboso's friend. She runs a salon in town where Ms. Laboso used to do her hair. Gloria was expecting Ms. Laboso to do her hair this afternoon. When the news came, she and all the ladies in her salon were in shock because they expected Ms. Laboso today. The Swahili people say, ajali haina kinga . However, whatever happened has shocked all of us. We wish to pray for these families. In honour of our departed colleagues, we should adjourn and join the families and the nation in mourning. I knew Ms. Laboso before we came to this House. We belong to a group of professionals that used to meet and discuss ideas on socio-political and economic matters of this country. I knew Mr. Kones through my late brother. They served in this House together. However, Ms. Laboso was a fried who had a lot of courage and a burning ambition to serve and help her people of Sotik Constituency. She reminded me of a poem once written by an American poet about the Statue of Liberty. The poem says in part:- "Above the Statue of Liberty the lady that stands, she is not like the Greek gods of Greek fame. With giant limbs she leaves astride from land to land; here at our sea- washed sunset gates shall stand a mighty woman with a torch, whose flame is the imprisoned lightning and her name, mother of exiles. She says: Give me your poor, give me your tired, give me this, your utmost tempest trust." That is all that Ms. Laboso sought for her people of Sotik. May God bless her soul.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I stand to support the Motion. Both Ms. Laboso and Mr. Kones were my personal friends. It is very difficult to talk about them now as departed people; people who were very vibrant. Mr. Kones was a Minister in a Government that I served and he was the protector of public servants. We knew, as civil servants that if we had a problem and could not communicate well or someone was, indeed, in trouble and we thought that person could not defend himself, then we approached Mr. Kones to communicate with the former boss to assist us. I remember Amb. Franklin Bett and I going to him many times to protect a certain Head of Public Service whom we thought was being mistreated sometime back. Mr. Kones was of course, a brilliant communicator and a very nice person. He laughed all the time with an infectious laugh. You would go to him because you thought the world was coming down but his first response would be to laugh and you would then realise that all was not lost. He would go out of his way to educate, help and assist at all times. I shall miss Mr. Kones dearly. Ms. Laboso did not meet with me in this House. We met in the flower industry; she as a seller and I as a grower. We developed a relationship. I can say this about Ms. Laboso without any fear of contradiction: She was brilliant, exuberant, full of big ideas, brave but also extremely kind. She also shared information freely. I know that the women who were elected to this House have learnt from Ms. Laboso where to go to assist other women who have not yet come to the House but hope to come to this House. I can truly say that the women in this House will truly miss Ms. Laboso. She was useful, busy at KEWOPA and all other organisations. Indeed, I as a person who did not go out of my way wondering where support for women would come from; I always waited for Ms. Laboso to drop in for a cup of tea and tell me what is happening. She shared her information freely and tried to assist others to know what they needed to know to move forward. Ms. Laboso and Mr. Kones were the lives of the party. As a rule, I do not leave my house June 11, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1125 late. On 23rd May, on the eve of Mr. Kones's departure to Tokyo, they called me and asked me to join them for dinner. I left my house to go to see them because I knew I would learn something and also it would be a good time for all. We discussed a lot of things; many of them to do with where we were going as a country. Mr. Kones wanted me to understand that sometimes, you have to come down to a certain level to communicate with some people. There were issues that we needed to sort out. Before we parted, he said that he was going to Japan come back and then go to South Africa. On his return, we were to go to Aldai. This we were to do this week. He had many relatives in Aldai who used to call him all the time. He then said to me: "Look after Lorna as always when I am away." I then told him; "I always look after Lorna even when you are here." It is very difficult for a person to understand that such two good people can depart at the same time. Let me join the others in sending my condolences to their families and to assure them that we, the friends of Lorna and Kones will always keep them in our minds and sight and will never leave them alone. May God rest their souls in eternal peace.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me this important opportunity to support this Motion of Adjournment in honour of our departed friends; our colleagues, Mr. Kones and Ms. Laboso. Only the other day when we held a conference at Safari Park, I remember you advised us that the moment a Member of Parliament is elected from whichever constituency and joins this House, he or she becomes a national leader. That is why we are called Members of the National Assembly. The contributions that we make and the roles that we play in our capacities as Members of Parliament are, indeed, roles and contributions that are supposed to go to the national good of every Kenyan within the borders and outside the borders of this Republic. It is in this particular position that I would like to remember the contributions that the late hon. Kipkalia Kones has made for the past 20 years. I got to know him as a Member of Parliament, not at a personal level, but because he was a source of inspiration to those of us who were aspiring politicians. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I still remember very well that in 1991, when Section 2(A) of the Constitution was repealed, the hon. Kipkalia Kones stating to the then Opposition that they should accept it. He said a half a loaf of bread was better than no bread at all. That to me was a moment that inspired people, and those who were agitating for multipartyism. I still feel that the late hon. Kipkalia Kones made a contribution that has continued to inspire the country. Mr. Speaker, Sir, as I stand here I also remember that only recently, on 27th February, 2008, hon. Lorna Laboso, Dr. Oburu and myself went to Arusha to represent this Parliament. When the three of us were in Arusha for three days, the rest of our colleagues, who included hon. Members from South Africa, Nigeria, Sudan, Uganda and Tanzania, continued to see us as one, even though that was the time when this country was clearly on the threshold of anarchy. They regarded us as Kenyans. We continued, as one, to take supper, lunch and go for walks together when we had a short break. Mr. Speaker, Sir, it is very painful that such a thing can happen to a young aspiring Parliamentarian, who had a very great and deep-seated desire to uplift the welfare of the people of Sotik. In deed, I feel very much for the people of Sotik and Bomet, for this is a great loss. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I share grief with the families, and may the good Lord rest their souls in eternal peace. With those few remarks, I beg to support.
Mhe. Spika, ningependa kuungana na wenzangu kuomboleza vifo vya wenzetu mhe. Kones na mhe. Laboso. Kifo kimetuibia Wabunge muhimu. Ni Wabunge ambao walijitolea kikamilifu kufanya kazi zao. Bw. Spika, historia ya Bunge letu la nchi hii inaonyesha kwamba kila mwanzo wa Bunge jipya ni lazima tupate mkasa. Sitakuwa nimepotea nikisema ni wakati inapofaa tuelekeze macho 1126 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES June 11, 2008 yetu kwa Mwenyezi Mungu ili tuombe usalama katika nchi hii. Bw. Spika, ningependa kuungana na wale wanaosema kwamba ni muhimu sana uchunguzi kamilifu ufanyike. Si kwa sababu tunafikira kuwa kuna jambo lolote la hujuma lililofanyika, lakini ili kuhakikisha kuwa ripoti itakayotolewa itatumika kuhakikisha kuwa vyombo vinavyotumika kama ndege vimewekwa katika hali inayoridhisha. Bila shaka kuna kosa lililotokea mahali na likasababisha ndege hiyo kuanguka. Bw. Spika, ninasisitiza kwamba inafaa ripoti za ajali zije Bungeni ili tuweze kuzifuatilia na kuhakikisha kuwa mapendekezo yake yanatekelezwa, ili tuhakikishe kuwa ndege zitakazotumiwa na Wabunge zitakuwa salama. Bw. Spika, kwa niaba ya watu wa Mwatate, ambalo ndilo eneo ninalowakilisha, ninatoa rambirambi zangu kwanza kwa watu wa Bomet na Sotik, and pia kwa Bunge hili la Kumi kwa kuwapoteza Wabunge hawa. Bw. Spika, ninaunga mkono Hoja hii.
Thank you Mr. Speaker, Sir. In supporting this Motion of adjournment, let me also take this opportunity on my own behalf and on behalf of the people of Central Imenti to send our condolences to the Members of the Tenth Parliament for losing two gallant colleagues, the leadership of ODM for losing two very gallant fighters for reforms in this country, and to the President of this Republic for losing a Cabinet Minister and an Assistant Minister. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am also speaking on behalf of my good friend, Mr. James Orengo, with whom I sat for many hours late into the night when attempts to cut short Mr. Kipkalya Kones's parliamentary career were made. We deviced legal ways of challenging those attempts in courts, and to support Mr. Kipkalya Kones. We did not see him as a client. We saw him as a fighter, not only for the people of the greater Kericho region, but for all Kenyans wherever they were. Whenever I had the opportunity to join hon. Orengo in the High Court or Court of the Appeal, we always made it very clear that Mr. Kipkalya Kones stood for far more than the area he represented. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I got to know Ms. Lorna Laboso before she became a Member of Parliament when we were struggling to get into this House. On occasions we were unsuccessful. What struck me most about her was not only her courage but also her willingness to stand up for a cause. Mr. Speaker, Sir, the history of this House is replete with examples of many men and women who, knowing that wrongs were being committed, sat low. Mr. Kipkalya Kones and Ms. Lorna Laboso would never never sit still when a wrong was being committed by the mighty and powerful. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I had an occasion to accompany Mr. Kipkalya Kones to his constituency for a fundraising mission when I worked with him in Ford(P) for a short period. I know of the attempts made by the Provincial Adminstration to prevent us from addressing a public function to raise funds for a needy medical case. Even with that smile that we will always remember him with, he stood firm. He laughed loudly but he stood firm and said: "We are not moving. Go and tell Mr. Moi that we are here to raise funds for a needy child." Mr. Speaker, Sir, one prays and wishes that the sentiments going out to the people of Kenya from this House, united as we are, speaking as Kenyans, can reach all the constituencies today that are holding by-elections; that, in honour of those two great Kenyans, let the voting be peaceful. Let the best man or woman win the by-elections. Let us not shed any more blood, whether by accident or design, in the name of politics. I associate myself fully with those calling for an audit of the honourable Members of this House who have lost their lives in the early stages of the parliamentary sessions, so that the people of Kenya can rest assured that whenever the representatives of people go out to their constituencies, June 11, 2008 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES 1127 whether by road or air, adequate security measures for their safety are taken. That is because they represent ordinary men and women of this country. We would like to see that taken seriously, so that we do not speak about it only on occasions when we mourn as we do today. Mr. Speaker, Sir, with those few remarks, I beg to support this Motion.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me the opportunity to also contribute to this Motion on the Floor. It is a very sad Motion for this House as well as the nation. When the news came yesterday, I, personally, was chairing a meeting of the Heads of Departments in my Ministry. As we finished the meeting, we were informed of the sad happening. Everybody just stopped; stunned! We are still stunned. It is difficult to even understand or accept what has happened. It is a time to turn to God and ask for strength not only for the nation and this House, but also for the family members who have been left behind. I, personally, have, especially, worked with hon. Kipkalya Kones in the two Parliaments; one, when he was nominated and also when he was elected. His contributions in this House were of the highest quality. He was somebody who had foresight and vision not only for the people of his constituency, but also the people of this country. Sometime a few years back, I invited hon. Kones to my house for lunch. We sat with a few other leaders and my family. He immediately became a friend to my husband. They discussed many other things other than just leadership. At that time, we were concerned about the unity of the country. We were all talking about how, as leaders, we must lead the country and unite our people, instead of making divisions. It is something that he upheld. We and a few others agreed that, that was the right way to go. I still want to implore this House, in memory of our leaders, that we must follow that route of unity, caring and building a strong Kenya. That is exactly what they have been doing for the last few months as they served in the Coalition Government. So, in hon. Kones, we have lost a national leader; somebody of great experience who will be difficult to replace, even for the nation and the people of Bomet. For hon. Lorna Laboso, I first felt angry. I had to confess and ask for forgiveness from God. I asked: "Why a woman when we are so few in this House?" She is somebody who had shown exemplary leadership. I did not know her before, but I have sat with her in our Kenya Women Parliamentarians Association (KEWOPA) meetings. I have seen her vibrant leadership also in this House. She was always laughing, happy, ready to comfort and offer help. For us, especially as women Members of Parliament, we really feel that, that is a big loss. That is because we do not even know whether another woman will be elected. I hope that they elect another woman in that constituency to bring to us another Lorna. On Sunday is when I last saw hon. Lorna Laboso. She joined us in Limuru as there was a celebration for the Member for Limuru. She came from her celebrations on Saturday and stopped at Limuru to join us. She was happy. She addressed the meeting in Limuru. Those of us who were there shared a meal together. It is difficult even to say now that it has happened. I send my condolences and those of my constituents to the families.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I would like to thank you for allowing this Motion. I also congratulate the Vice-President, Minister for Home Affairs and Leader of Government Business for thinking that there is need for us to have this adjournment. I support the Motion and also send my condolences. Mr. Speaker, Sir, when I think about hon. Kipkalya Kones, he comes from a special pool of politicians in this country. Allow me at this moment to also pay tribute to those particular politicians, because they are men and women of actions and not just words. Mr. Kones was a man of action. Like hon. Kones, so were the late hon. Karisa Maitha. Like hon. Kones, so was the late hon. Moses Mudavadi. Like hon. Kones, so are hon. John Michuki, hon. Kenneth Matiba and, in 1128 PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES June 11, 2008 my view, hon. Nyachae. I pay my respect to all those people. Mr. Speaker, Sir, hon. Laboso and hon. Kones were the ninth and tenth Members of Parliament, consecutively, to lose their lives by way of aircraft accidents. The accident that took place yesterday was the third one. It is important that when the mourning period is over, the Ministry of Transport and the Directorate of Civil Aviation should think and re-think---
On a point of order, Mr, Speaker, Sir. In view of the fact that we will be required to line up to sign the condolence book, go and receive the bodies of our dear colleagues and make our contributions towards the support of our late colleagues, I want to beg that the Mover be now called upon to reply.
Order, hon. Members! That is a legitimate concern and, at this point, going by the established practice, I will now put the Question, which is that this House do adjourn until 12th June, 2008, at 2.30 p.m.
Order, hon. Members! The bodies of our two colleagues are scheduled to arrive in Nairobi at around 11 O'clock this morning. So, if we can all be at the airport, it would be a great honour.
Wilson Airport, I am told.
Hon. Members, the House is, therefore, adjourned until tomorrow, Thursday, 12th June, 2008, at 2.30 p.m. The House rose at 10.25 a.m