Hon. Members, Standing Order No.41, relating to Messages, requires the Speaker to convey to the House any Message received from the Senate. In this regard, I would like to convey to the House a Message from the Senate titled âAppointment of Members of Parliament to the Pan-African Parliamentâ; it reads follows:- âTHAT, pursuant to Article 5 of the Protocol to the Treaty establishing the African Economic Community relating to the Pan-African Parliament, the Senate on Tuesday, 30th July, 2013, approved the appointment of the following Members of Parliament to the Pan-African Parliament:- 1. Sen. Kipchumba Murkomen. 2. Sen. Janet Ongâera. 3. Hon. Zakayo K. Cheruiyot. 4. Hon. Rachael Wambui Shebesh, and 5. Hon. Millie Grace Akoth Odhiambo-Mabona.â
Hon. Members, the aforesaid is a Message requiring the concurrence of the National Assembly. Pursuant to Standing Order No.41 (6) (b), therefore, I direct that this matter be put down on the Order Paper for tomorrow, Thursday, 1st August, 2013, for consideration by this House.
Hon. Rose Ogendo Nyamunga, do you want to comment on the Message?
No, hon. Speaker.
Hon. Robert Pukose, do you want to say something about the Message?
No, hon. Speaker.
Or you are just being strategic? Could the hon. Members standing assume their seats?
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Hon. Speaker, Sir, thank you. Based on the Message that you have read to the House on the Members of the Pan-African Parliament (PAP), could you clarify the ratio between the Senate and the National Assembly and how it was arrived at?
Hon. Wamalwa, this being a deliberative House, it has the power to even set the ratios howsoever, bearing in mind that we have two Houses.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, I wanted to draw your attention and request whether this is a matter on which you could allow the House a few minutes to ventilate.
That is what I did by allowing five or 10 minutes for hon. Members to express themselves.
May I proceed then, hon. Speaker, Sir?
Hon. Speaker, Sir, my understanding of the regional parliament--- When I talk about regional parliament, I am thinking of the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA). This is an assembly to which you send representatives of the people, elected to represent people in that capacity. I know that in jurisdictions that have a bicameral arrangement like our own--- Let me use the mother of the Commonwealth because we have always operated within the Commonwealth Parliamentary tradition. When you look at the role of the House of Lords as a Chamber operating separately from the House of Commons, it is very clear in terms of who between the House of Commons and the House of Lords carries the distinctive role of representing the people. That is without doubt the House of Commons. It is the same distinction we could draw between the Senate and the House of Representatives in the USA, one being basically a House of state and the other one being the house of representatives of the people. Therefore, I am really hoping that this matter will not again become another arena for unnecessary friction. This is the House of representatives of the people of the Republic of Kenya. The Senate, in our jurisdiction, is pretty similar to the arrangement in the American jurisdiction. Under our Constitution - unfortunately, I do not have my copy here - I know
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Hon. Speaker, Sir, I would basically like to support what Hon. Ababu has stated very clearly. I think it is critical for this House to take its true position and responsibilities as a House which represents the truly elected members of the Kenyan public. It is a matter that should not be discussed or debated. We believe that hon. Members who should represent us at the PAP should be from this House. The only issue I would like to raise is that even when we have certain individuals, hon. Members who have been selected to be representatives for us as political parties - I believe that must have been the reason why those names were given - it is important that during the process of having such nominations and selections of Members from this House, who will be representing us, we should have transparency and accountability within parties, so that we know who is actually going to represent us and the reason they are going to do so. Hon. Members who are going to represent us should be people who will add value. I know that historically as in the last parliament, hon. (Ms.) Shebesh did an excellent job. I am happy that her name is there but I am not sure that the other hon. Members add value.
What do you mean?
Hon. Speaker, Sir, I am looking at the Constitution and seeing that it is very categorical that the role of the Senate is to represent the counties and to serve and protect the interest of county governments; I am seeing a serious challenge in any particular county having interests outside the boundaries of this country. I think, perhaps, we need to think of creating a parliament for the counties, so that Senators can be sent to something like that, within the country. The National Assembly is supposed to deal with the national organs of this Government. It has power even to approve declarations of war,
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Hon. Speaker, Sir, I think the issue of the roles of the National Assembly and the Senate has been debated publicly for quite some time. As hon. Ababu puts it, this should not be seen â what he has raised â as trying to undermine the Senate, but as trying to put into perspective the role of each House. Sometimes I ask myself: When Kenyans passed this Constitution, was it their intention to create two Houses to do the same job? I do not think the people of Kenya would have done that, that is created two Houses one with 349 Members and another with 67 Members, for them to do the same job. I do not think the people of Kenya could be that careless. So, these two Houses have distinct roles to play. It is important that this is understood. If you look at the functions that have been spelt out in the Fourth Schedule, you will see where the international relations fall. The role of international relations is national Government function and it has nothing to do with counties. Secondly, you realize that as opposed to Members of Parliament who have a single vote in the sense that Mbadi has a vote as hon. Mbadi, the Senate does not have individual votes. What they carry are county votes. They are delegations from the counties. So, when you appoint one Senator, say, Murkomen from Elgeyo Markwet and he goes to represent this country out there, you are giving that county undue advantage over Homabay County. So, it is not right to have Senator from one county because whatever transaction they do, they do it on behalf of their counties. Initially, I thought a referendum is not a good idea. However, right now I am beginning to realize that probably we need this referendum so that Kenyans define the roles of Senators and that of the National Assembly once and for all. When we try to tell them to restrict themselves to protecting counties and legislating for counties--- Right now their counties have a lot of problems one of them being not knowing what functions they are supposed to carry out in terms of, say, roads and so on. They do not know which roads belong to the counties and which ones belong to the national Government. We ought to see Senators initiate legislation directed at that and then passing it to us for reconciliation and then we come up with better legislation. They should avoid double legislation. Everything that the National Assembly touches, the Senate wants to touch. Would Kenyans be this careless to create two Houses to just duplicate roles? I do not think so. Even though, Mr. Speaker, you have made that statement, I think the Senate should not be represented in international matters. Let them restrict themselves to counties.
Hon. Speaker, one of the Senators who has been nominated to the Pan-African Parliament is a nominated Senator. I am not sure whether we all know that nominated Senators have no voting right in that Senate. How will she have a right to vote for us in the Pan-African Parliament?
Hon. Speaker, it is common sense that when you look at the ration of 67 to 349 in terms of simplicity, you realize that the Senate can only be represented if there are six vacancies. However, because we have five vacancies, it is unfortunate that they are not represented here. Article 96 is very clear on the role of the Senate. They are supposed to legislate matters within the counties. In Pan-African Parliament, you discuss regional matters. These are matters to do with nationals. So, they have no say in such an issue. So, as others have said, let us go for the referendum and let the people decide. We are waiting for the Supreme Court, although I am worried that when the court ruling will come I do not know where the Senate will be. The Constitution is very clear. We know our roles and they know what they are supposed to do. Hon. Speaker, respect is earned and not demanded. I was shocked when I read todayâs newspaper. People are looking down upon the leadership of the National Assembly. You are our Speaker. You are our head. In the Constitution, in case the President and the Deputy President are incapacitated then you are the one to take power. So, it is high time they respected you because they do not know where you will be tomorrow. Hon. Speaker, matters to deal with the MDGs are actually within the province of the National Assembly. It is high time they respected us. Thank you.
Hon. Members, I have directed that this business be on the Order Paper tomorrow. In terms of our own Standing Order No.87, hon. Members are allowed to ventilate a little while.
Half a slot!
On a point of order, hon. Speaker. Actually it causes me a lot of pain to interrupt my senior brother who I respect so much. However, I believe he is not
No! No! No!
Order, Members! Allow hon. Asman Kamama to say his bit!
Hon. Gichigi, is your intervention on a point of order or to contribute?
On a point of order, hon. Speaker, Sir. The PAP is the legislative body of the African Union which acts on oversight, advisory and consultative powers. So, is the Member in order to tell us that the Constitution does not talk about the powers of the Senate and the National Assembly? When you look at the role of the PAP, where they are talking about oversight, advisory and consultative powers as a legislative body of the African Union, those are the functions at the national level.
Hon. Kamama, complete making your statement.
On a point of order, hon. Speaker, Sir. I do not want to anticipate debate because this Motion will be before the House tomorrow. As hon. Namwamba has said, this House has a mandate to deal with Motions and Bills as they come. It is not the preserve of hon. Kamama to speak for the Senate on the Floor of this House. You can only speak for the Senate and other bodies when you are attending a political rally or in a funeral. On the Floor of this House, when the Motion comes tomorrow, this House has a number of functions. It can decide to reject the names in total and substitute them with new ones. It can even decide to defer that Motion. It can even decide to say that we will go back to the PAP, re-look at the protocol and increase our membership as a country. So, it is the preserve of this House. I am sure when the opportunity was availed, there are those who said that they wanted to become governors. There are those who said that they wanted to represent counties, but the 349 Members decided to represent the people. Let us live with that and wait for that debate. There are clear indications that, that debate will be very interesting tomorrow. I am sure nobody in this House will miss that debate tomorrow, God willing.
Hon. Members, allow hon. Kamama to finish. I am sure he will give us opportunity to look at Article 96.
Order, Members! Those who are going to have a chance, please, take one or two minutes, so that we can have three or five reactions. The real Motion as directed will be tomorrow.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, let me start by saying that this House has a very serious duty to protect the law and the Constitution. I also want to make it very clear to the watermelons that are here because I do not think that we have time for watermelons; it is time that we have to say this is red and that is green, you cannot be in the middle throughout because this is what is messing the country. The names that have come before this House are okay, but would it not be a failure by this House to accept a situation where we just pick a number of people and take them to PAP to represent the people of the Republic of Kenya whose function is vested on the National Assembly? Would we not be doing a disservice to the people of Kenya? That is because the mandate of Pan-African Parliament (PAP) is to represent the people
Thank you, hon. Speaker. Hon. Speaker, I am being told I am âanalogueâ. I was struggling to be âdigitalâ as I am always. Hon. Speaker, there is a problem in this country. We have two levels of Parliament and that has been agreed upon. One Parliament is busy going to so many retreats and workshops, invariably, in Mombasa.
Because they are idle!
Hon. Speaker, it appears to me that this is happening because they do not go to Mombasa or wherever to understand their role, really! They go there to swim and do other extraneous things. The levels of these Parliaments in terms of their roles are clearly defined. We have the role of the National Assembly in Article 95 and the role of the Senate in Article 96. By the way, even if you look at those provisions, the role of the National Assembly is in eight substantive provisions. The role of the Senate is in four. The most important part is Article 96. This one I am reading to hon. Kamama because he indicated that he does not understand this. The problem we have as the National Assembly is questioning how we will be able to accommodate the hon. Members nominated by the Senate to represent Kenya â if they can do that â at PAP. Now, Article 96 (2) reads:- âThe Senate participates in the law-making function of Parliament by considering, debating and approving Bills concerning counties, as provided in Articles 109 to 113.â Now, when you send a Senator to PAP, is the County of Homa Bay in PAP? This is a Parliament in which the representatives are persons representing the people of nations as a continental body. So, in as much as we may want to sympathize and appear to be the brethren we should be, we must, first, remember that we are a law-making institution. We must be the first people to obey the law. It would be difficult to accommodate those hon. Members, the Senators purported to be nominated for appointment to PAP. The debate that has been going on between the National Assembly and the Senate is becoming worrying. I just needed to end by alerting fellow Members of this House to the provisions of Article 95(5). It provides that the National Assembly reviews the conduct in office of the President, the Deputy President and other State officers. If hon. Members would care to read the provisions of Article 260 where we define âState officersâ and âState officesâ, the Senate or our brethren across the road, are State officers. The time has come, hon. Speaker and hon. Members, for us to begin reviewing the conduct of the Senate. Else, we are taking a lot of time to debate issues which should--- With those very many remarks, I urge that we debate the matter tomorrow. Thank you.
Hon. Sakwa Bunyasi. The machines have technical hitches. We could use the dispatch box.
Hon. Speaker, I rise to provide what I think is called a discordant voice. I thought we were going to have debate around this issue. We are having all rounds of choruses. It worries me when this august House with this depth of knowledge and experience, suddenly agrees on something completely without any divergent voice.
Hon. Sakwa, there is a point of order from hon. Alice Wahome. Take your seat. The other hon. Member is on her feet.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. I want to ask whether the hon. Member is in order to address this House by way of derogatory and demeaning wording against wives? Hon. Speaker, Sir, the largest voices I am getting on the Floor â as you are getting â are from hon. Members of the male gender. They are protesting because I think that language cannot be allowed in this Floor. Hon. Speaker, Sir, I am seeking your direction and demand that the hon. Member withdraws those remarks and apologise to both men and women of this House. He should also apologise to husbands in this House. I am sure hon. Dalmas Otieno is on the Floor of this House.
Hon. Alice Wahome, the hon. Member has already withdrawn. Yes, hon. Ababu Namwamba! For the time being, as we sort out the electronic gadgets, let us use the Dispatch Box.
On a point of order, hon. Speaker, Sir. This is not just a matter of husbands, wives and co-wives. This is a grave matter! The hon. Member for Nambale has cast aspersions on our integrity, capacity and sense of judgment! To presume that when there is unanimity and consensus in this House, it is through paucity of thought and shallowness of debate is an insult to the integrity of this House. This is a House of debate and when we are debating, we can disagree, agree, build consensus and we can even cross the Floor and hug, to express unanimity. This is a spirit that the hon. Member should actually be encouraging, we can sit here and fasten our minds around and build consensus. The hon. Member needs not only withdraw on the question of casting aspersions on our wives and those who are endowed and can go an extra mile to afford and have co-
He has withdrawn!
No! No! I have not heard his apology. His apology must be heard unequivocally and, I would plead for a sanction by the House against the hon. Member. Thank you.
Hon. Bunyasi Sakwa, you have heard the requests and demands by the House.
Thank you very much, indeed, hon. Speaker. Clearly, I must have said something really right because it got every hon. Member interested in what I was saying. I have already said that I have no difficult apologizing because I am quite confident in myself. So, I would not mind apologizing when I am wrong. I withdraw the words, âbickering wivesâ, just because it may have had connotations that distract us from the point I am trying to make.
I have apologized and withdrawn those words. I have said though that, I will put what I was saying in a mathematical way; that it must not be a zero sum gain. If that is more palatable, let us use that. I have, in no way, brought this House into disrepute. This is a particular discussion in this august House. Hon. Speaker, Sir, let me just conclude and leave the Floor by saying: In my experience, we must have the spirit of give and take. We must respect the class of bi- cameralism that was put on us, even though we may have differences that we should debate robustly. Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir.
Hon. Members, while allowing the Leader of Minority Party to contribute, I want to inform hon. Members that in readiness for electronic voting, all the requests earlier on made have been deleted. So, you may wish to place the requests afresh.
Thank you hon. Speaker. I just want to add my voice to this very important debate. In the last few weeks, we have had several attacks from our colleagues. It is good to reduce temperatures in a more just situation. Everybody gets a stone or whatever you can lay your hands on and you try to kill the thief; only to realize later that you have killed your cousin.
On the issue of representation in the Pan-African Parliament, I have done my arithmetic while I was seated here and I have seen that, if we did equal representation, whereby we share those seats on pro-rata basis, on the strength of each parliament; if there were six slots, they will get one. But if there are less than six slots, they will get zero. The National Assembly has 349 hon. Members while the Senate has 67 Senators.
Let us vote because we have quorum. If we stay long, hon. Members will start leaving the Chamber. Hon. Duale, it is time for voting. Let us vote!
Just allow me to inform Members that these are budget ceilings for this new Financial Year 2013/2014, which are already available in Room 8 of this Building. You will, therefore, from today, be able to give us your projects which you want to finance using that Fund. Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir.
Hon. James Gakuya, you can do it from there. To save time, you can walk here to the Table.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. I beg to give notice of the following Motion:-
Hon. Benjamin Jomo Washiali.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. I beg to give notice of the following Motion:- THAT, aware that millions of Kenyans suffer from serious jigger infestation that has greatly impacted their lives; deeply concerned that severe jigger infestation has forced children to drop out of school through persistent absenteeism and rendered parents incapable of providing for their families and yet, the Government has given the problem little or no attention; further concerned that despite on-going efforts by Non- Governmental Organizations to mitigate the situation, there still remains a lot to be done; this House resolves that the Government establishes a department in the relevant Ministry to address the jigger menace by ensuring sufficient funding to complement the efforts of other stakeholders in addressing this matter. Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir.
Next Order! That was a Motion on jiggers. Hon. Kanini Kega, take the Floor.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. This is a request for a Statement. Pursuant to Standing Order 44 (2)(c), I wish to request a Statement from the Chairperson of the Departmental Committee on Education, Research and Technology concerning the appointment of key public university personnel. Noting the recent repeal of law governing university management, that is University Act 2012 as gazetted on 13th December, 2012, I seek a Statement from the Chairperson on the process of appointment and qualification of the following persons, especially at Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology (JKUAT) and its ten constitute colleges:- (i) University Chancellor.
Very well, the Chairperson of the Committee on Education, Research and Technology.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. The Member has raised such important issues in the education sector and especially the universities. I, therefore, request that he gives the Committee time to form a panel so that we can do investigations. So, three weeks will be enough for us.
Three weeks under recess.
I am not so sure about the recess, but three weeks are enough. Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir.
Next Statement is by the hon. Joseph Ngugi Nyumu.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. Pursuant to Standing Order 44 (2)(c), I wish to request a Statement from the Chairperson of the Departmental Committee of Health concerning the supply of medicine in health centers and dispensaries within the country. Noting the recent scraping of the cost-sharing programme by the Government, there has been an acute shortage of medicine in most of the health centres and dispensaries throughout the country. I, therefore, seek the Statement on the following:- (i) When the supply of medicine will be made available. (ii) What the Ministry is doing to ensure that there is no lapse in terms of availability of the medicine. (iii) Whether the supply of free medicine to the public medical centers is sustainable in the long term in terms of cost. Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir.
The Chairperson of the Health Committee.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. I would like to appreciate the concern that has been raised by the hon. Member. I request that he gives us three weeks to hold consultations with the Ministry and get a response on this matter. Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir.
Is that okay?
It is okay, hon. Speaker, Sir.
On a point of order, hon. Speaker, Sir.
Yes, hon. Mbadi.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. I am rising under Standing Order No. 40, which is on the sequence of proceedings in the House.
Hon. Speaker, I am aware that we are on Order No.7, but chances are that this Order may take so long and this House requires to vote physically. A minimum of two-
Thank you very much. Fortunately, we are through with the business listed as Order No.7. So, we now proceed to the next Order.
Hon. Members, as you are aware, debate on this Motion was concluded yesterday, but we could not proceed to the next level. Therefore, I give directions on the following procedure of voting:-The Bell shall be rung for ten minutes; at the expiry of ten minutes, the doors shall be locked and the Bar drawn. The hon. Members without their electronic cards shall stand by the Civil Servants Benches, with the Noes to my left and the Ayes to my right. Hon. Members shall then log-in their cards only once. I will then put the Question and the electronic vote will be taken for two minutes. At the end of the two minutes, hon. Members who will be standing by the Civil Servants Benches shall record their vote with the Clerks-at-the-Table. Finally, I will announce the results of the Division.
Hon. Members, in the event that we do not get the requisite numbers, I will give further directions. I now direct that the Bell be rung for ten minutes.
Hon. Members, please resume your seats. Remember I had asked you about those hon. Members who do not have their cards. May I direct that the doors be locked and the Bar be drawn?
I am informed, through confession, by the Leader of Minority Party that he does not have his today and so he will be one of those hon. Members; those of you who may have put
Hon. Members, understand the simple word, âremoveâ. We will go by the language that is best understood; âremoveâ! Therefore, remember that we indicated you will only log in once because if you do it twice, it will cause confusion. Before you log in, I am required to put the Question and hon. Members without cards should stand next to the benches.
Order, Members! Kindly allow the Mover to reply. He has a balance of eight minutes.
Thank you very much, hon. Speaker, Sir. First of all, I thank all the Members who contributed to this Bill. Other than two Members who opposed, the Bill was supported almost 90 per cent. I beg to move that the Bill be read the Second Time.
Members, kindly listen to what the Chairman of the Budget and Appropriations Committee has to say.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, in accordance with Standing Order No.31(1), I beg to move that the House do now adjourn. The Standing Order reads as follows:- â(1) A Member may at any time, for reasons stated, seek leave to move âThat, this House do now adjournâ.
The reason why I am seeking the adjournment of the House is fairly straightforward. You are aware that this country has a new Constitution which was promulgated, the work of our people. Thereafter, laws were enacted by this House specifically the Transition to Devolved Governments Act of 2012, the law that sought to create the structures that manage the transition functions to the county governments. In that process, an institution was created called the âTransitional Authorityâ and the work of that institution is to oversee devolution functions. It has been given certain criteria and standard to follow.
We are the first Parliament to be elected on the new Constitution. Since we took office, what we have witnessed, in respect of specific functions in particular in the areas of roads, energy and to a certain extent health has been very confusing. The Committee that I am honoured to chair together with the Committees on Energy, Roads, Health and also the Committee that oversee devolution have met several times seeking to see and to be assured that this process of devolution is taking place as it should. The law that I mentioned is very clear. It is based on Article 15 of the Constitution that deals with the transitional provisions. We are very concerned as Members of this Assembly and as leaders in our various constituencies that the process of devolution is being done in a manner that is less than convincing. The process of devolving these functions is being done in a manner that is causing tension.
The Cabinet Secretaries responsible for the portfolios that I have mentioned are saying different things to different theatres. They say one thing to the Executive, something different to the governors, something different to the Senators, something different to this Assembly and I suspect they also say different things when they meet among themselves. We are not entirely convinced that there is honesty, transparency and professionalism in the way these functions are being devolved. We have met, as I said, three times to discuss this matter with these Cabinet Secretaries and it has not been a very easy time. Today, I chaired a meeting that was really quite difficult. The reason I am suggesting that we adjourn this House is so that we can summon these Cabinet Secretaries to come here and come up with the way forward in a manner that is convincing and conclusive.
I do not need to speak for long. I, therefore, wish to plead that this House sees the need for us to adjourn. We have summoned the Cabinet Secretaries that we met this morning, so that they can come to this Chamber and tell us the way forward. The period that we have been given for devolution is three years. The manner in which it is being administered is very unconvincing, as I said. I do not wish to repeat myself. I wish therefore, to plead and persuade this House that it agrees we adjourn. Accordingly, I would like to ask the Chairman of the Committee on Energy, Communication and Information, hon. Jamleck Kamau, to second the Motion.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, I rise to second this Motion that the House do now adjourn. I recollect that yesterday when we were debating here, you said âuntil you hear from meâ. Before the Members hear from us, we thought it is important that you also hear from the Cabinet Secretary and the Chairman of the Transitional Authority. They are waiting and as soon as this House agrees to this adjournment, they will come here. They will explain and tell the House why we are having these problems in devolution. I know for sure that the National Assembly is committed to ensuring that devolution works in this country. Those people who think that the National Assembly is the one bringing problems in devolution, they had better be told that the National Assembly will be in the front line to make sure devolution works in this country. Therefore, I want to set the record straight. It is clear that some functions that are being devolved, the counties are not ready for them as yet. Therefore, for this country to move forward, we must move in a clear manner and in a manner that is not going to inconvenience the citizens of this country. Therefore, without wasting a lot of time, I second this Motion. I urge Members to agree that we adjourn and have these people before us, so that before the end of the day, you will hear from us.
Put the Question!
I can see hon. Junet is burning to say something. I can see some Members are excited about the new phraseology of âput the Questionâ. Before we do so, so that you all get used to this one, I will now propose the Question.
Let us hear from hon. Junet. Let us hear somebody from this side. He has been quiet for some time.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir, for realizing that. I would like to support this Motion for Adjournment. This country is full of chaos at the moment. Governors are shouting at the top of their voices that you devolve everything and anything that is in this country from Nairobi to the villages. We need to get a formula of getting things. We cannot devolve things which they do not have capacity to handle. As you are aware, the Constitution has given a period of three years for functions to be devolved. The Transitional Authority is not clear on whether they have done any audit of those counties in terms of whether they can handle and execute those functions properly. The issue of saying that we should devolve everything at once might not work. Counties which have capacity like Nairobi, Nakuru, Kisumu---
Nairobi does not have capacity.
I hear a Member saying that Nairobi does not have. He is a Member from Nairobi. So, we want to engage the Cabinet Secretaries now so that they can tell us exactly whether those counties are ready to absorb those functions that the Governors are yearning for to be devolved.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, so, I support and I seek your indulgence to give us an opportunity to adjourn this House so that we can engage the Cabinet Secretaries directly as the representatives of the people of Kenya and not counties.
Put the Question.
Hon. Members, it is like you are getting used to these phrases. Hon. Lessonet, just a minute. You know there is pecking order in the House. When the Chair notices the Leader of Majority Party---
And the Leader of the Minority Party.
Leader of Majority Party, you may have the Floor.
Hon. Speaker, yes, it is good the hon. Chairman of the Constituencies Development Fund (CDF) Committee--- Very soon the Jubilee Coalition might decide to give him that position but for now the Standing Orders are very clear.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, I stand to support this Motion. The Members who were here in the morning heard me very very clearly. When the people of Kenya went for a new Constitution, they were very clear in their minds about the role of a Governor, Senator, Member of Parliament, County Assembly and that of the National Government. It is well documented in various articles. There is a whole chapter on devolution. Articles 186 and 187 clearly talk about how to transfer functions between levels of Government.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, this morning I asked Members to support this Motion so that the Executive can be engaged. The confusion that we see in our country as far devolution is concerned emanates from the bodies that were created by this august House in order to facilitate devolution. One of them is the Commission on the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC). The other one is the Transitional Authority (TA) led by one chairman called Kinuthia Wamwangi. When he meets the Governors, led by the able chairman of the Governors Council, one, Isaac Rutto, he kneels down and he gives them what he feels and not what the Constitution says. When he meets the Executive, he tells them what they want to hear and not what the Constitution says. When he meets Members of Parliament, he wants to tell us what we want to hear but not what this Constitution says.
Hon. Speaker, Sir, the framers of this Constitution said devolution functions will be transferred within three years. The framers of the Constitution were not mad; some Governors want to transfer functions in 24 hours. I want to read Standing Order No.187 and I hope the Senators who were parroting yesterday about the leadership of this House and the Speaker will listen and get time to read the Constitution. Article No.187 talks about transfer of functions and powers between levels of Government. Article No.187(1)(a) says: âA function or power of government at one level may be transferred to a government at the other level by agreement between the governments if- (a) the function or power would be more effectively performed or exercised by the receiving governmentâ The words are âeffectively performedâ The growth of counties is not at par. The growth of counties in northern Kenya is not the same as the one of Nairobi or Kisumu. Kenya did not grow at one level and that is why we asked for devolution. Devolution was to cure marginalisation. Devolution was to cure regional imbalance. Devolution was to cure poverty. So, the areas which have been left because of marginalisation and regional imbalance are saying the rural roads must be devolved.
Leader of Minority Party.
Thank you, hon. Speaker, Sir. I am sure Members want us to dispose of this matter as quickly as possible but I want to say two things. One is that the Constitution took a lot of time to be enacted and it is very easy to misinterpret it and apply it in the wrong way. I just want to say that we have just voted overwhelmingly to extend the period here and it never mattered which side of the House one comes from. I want the Leader of Majority Party to listen to this: On very many areas of common interests, we have said we will vote together but it is also good to be conscious whenever we talk about the Constitution. We do not have to be seen to be fighting devolution. It is good that when we talk about devolution, we follow exactly what the law says and the CIC is the body that is mandated to do that. It interprets and knows what to do.
Yes, hon. Shebesh! Leader of Minority Party, there is a point of order from hon. Shebesh.
On a point of order, hon. Speaker. Is it in order for the Leader of Minority Party to always purport to speak for Jubilee, because he says that the whole of Jubilee dissented? What is âthe whole of Jubileeâ and are we allowing the Leader of Minority Party to speak about one side of the coalition all the time, as if he has more information than we do? It can never be the role of Leader of Minority Party to lecture hon. Members of the Jubilee side of this House on their roles. Is it in order?
Hon. Leader of Minority Party, I am sure you were not here in the last Parliament and I think even the other one. So, you may have forgotten to look at the Standing Orders to know that when a Member is on their feet, on a point order, the hon. Member who was speaking resumes his or her seat.
That is what I had done, but someone somewhere stole my card, that is why I just walked this way. But anyway, hon. Speaker, you know the role of the---
Hon. Speaker, Sir, protect me so that I make my point. I want to finish because we have the Cabinet Secretaries here to interrogate.
I support what the Leader of Majority Party said. You cannot change things. You cannot take money from one institution and take it to another without bringing a Bill to this House. With that, I support. Where there is insensitivity or where people are trying to block devolution, I will stand firm because that is what I am paid for. I am not a Jubilee leader. All I am saying is: Let us not be seen to fight devolution and when it suits Jubilee side, we all move together. We have to interpret the law as it is.
Finally, I want to make this last point so that we dispense with the business before us. I want the Jubilee side to be tolerant whenever they are dealing with us. They should not, at any other time, do selective withdrawal of security personnel from the CORD leaders, the way they have done it.
I support and thank you.
Hon. Members this is a simple matter and the longer you debate, the more you digress. The aim of the Motion was to enable hon. Members to interrogate the Cabinet Secretaries from this very Chamber, when we are not sitting as a House. You will be sitting as various Committees, I believe; Chairman of Budget and Appropriations Committee; Chairperson of Transport, Public Works and Housing; Chairperson of Energy, Communication and Information and others. So, the best thing is to put the Question.
Hon. Members, the House stands adjourned until tomorrow, Thursday, 1st August, 2013 at 2.30 p.m.