Hon. Senators, we have a Petition by Mr. Richard Kavemba Mutinda concerning the alleged breach of the Constitution and other laws by the Nairobi City County Executive. In the Petition, the petitioner seeks that since 2013, the Nairobi City County Government has failed to bank locally collected revenue in the County Revenue Fund as required by Article 207 of the Constitution and Section 109 of the Public Finance Management Act No.18 of 2012. The petitioner notes that the claim is supported by the Reports of the Controller of Budget and the Auditor-General for the Financial Years 2013/2014 and 2014/2015. The petitioner therefore prays that:- a) The Senate orders for a special audit to establish the status of revenue locally collected by the Nairobi City County Government and not banked in the county revenue fund since 2013 b) Requests the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to investigate the matter and take appropriate action. Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Order N0.226, I now allow comments, observations or clarification in relation to this petition for not more than 30 minutes. However for the sake of good order and because we have a lot of petitions, although the Standing Order says not more than 30 minutes, I shall not allow comments for more than 10 minutes because we need to deal with all the petitions that are before us.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. That Petition is important because it is a concern that has been expressed in this House by the Auditor General, Controller of Budget and many other watchdog institutions in this country. Since devolution started in 2013, many of our county governments have not been able to The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Hon. Senators, please, try and be brief.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it seems that people out there have more powers to penetrate into the affairs of the devolved governments than us as the Senate. We are the people who have been entrusted and empowered to make sure that the oversight facilities and services are provided by us. However, going by what has been happening in the past, we are unable to interrogate what happens in the county governments. Most county governments are misusing public funds. The other day, the Auditor- General singled out counties like Kirinyaga, Kakamega and many others where a lot of public funds have been misused. Since when did we give other people power to oversight and not the Senate? I wonder whether we still have the powers of over sighting county governments. It seems like we are irrelevant because anytime these things happen, the people in the counties do not regard us as people who can oversight because we have no such powers. Can we be told whether we have the powers to oversight because we are going to have a lot of problems moving forward to oversight the counties? A lot of money has been misused and embezzled and we have no powers to penetrate those offices and find out what might have happened to such monies. I beg to support the Petition.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I applaud that petitioner and point out to the whole country that whatever he is quoting in respect of Nairobi City County is not limited to this county alone. This mess is in all our counties with the exception of Meru and Kiambu counties. It is in only those counties that we have confirmed in our Committee that the revenue that is being realised by Gov. Peter Munya is more than what the defunct local authorities were collecting. Similarly, Gov. Kabogo is performing better than what the local authorities were collecting. This matter must be addressed because it is outright theft. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this issue came before the Committee of Finance, Commerce and Budget sometime back. I am surprised that it has not been resolved because the amounts that we are talking about are in excess of Kshs10 billion. I agree with Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale that the matter of unbanked money does not only affect Nairobi City County. It is everywhere. It is in fact one of the issues that was before us in the Gov. Gachagua Petition. Counties have incurred pending bills amounting to Kshs37 billion. It is no wonder that governors are attacking the Bill by Sen. Wamatangi which would ensure that there is a schedule of assets and liabilities before the new governors assume office. I am afraid that my friend, Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, is stepping into a county when he is elected to inherit debts. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, unfortunately, now that we do not have a good history of clearing petitions, would there not be another method through the Committee on Finance, Commerce and Budget who are seized of this matter to interrogate this matter differently? We are going to end our sessions and this matter will not have been resolved under the normal procedures of the Senate. Therefore, as you give your directions, the Committee on Finance, Commerce and Budget can find another method. Where is the Auditor-General and the Controller of Budget? Have these people abdicated their responsibilities? We, as the Senate, are called upon to save the counties not to have debts in excess of Kshs50 billion towards the next General Election.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also support the petitioner. This issue has been canvassed before. In fact, the one reason that governors are very confident to show up in the CPAIC confidently is because the devil is not in the monies that we take to the counties. The real devil is in the revenues collected and spent at source. That has happened in Narok County as well as many other counties. It is therefore an issue that we must get a way of expediting because this is an election year and people’s heads are focused in the campaigns. The investigation will, therefore, be frustrated just the way the audit of assets and liabilities with the Transition Authorities was frustrated. We must get a clear answer from the Auditor-General because they have cited resources and minimum manpower. We must get a way of making sure that this happens The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this petition could not have come at a better time. It is true that resources are being abused left and right. “The richer than thou” appearance that we see among governors is due to the use of monies collected at that level. It is alleged that forged receipts are used in some counties to collect resources and never remitted to the audit section of those counties hence that money is misused or taken by governors and their cronies. It is important that this petition is looked at in good time so that it can be a lesson to other counties.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I believe that this Petition will end up the Committee on Finance, Commerce and Budget, chaired by the Senator for Mandera County. As they look it this matter, it is important that the Committee causes the Auditor-General to look at the mismanagement of funds, especially, locally generated or collected revenue. In My County of Bungoma, the Governor and his government in their own projection indicated that they were going to collect Kshs1.470 billion. At the end of the year, they file a return that they have collected Kshs183 million when records show that they collected Kshs2 billion. So, the rest of the money is misappropriated, stolen and stashed away by people who are uncaring and do not provide services. Therefore, I urge the Committee chaired by the Senator for Mandera to cause the Auditor-General to carry out some forensic audits on locally collected revenue and how it is utilised or where it is banked by governors.
Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Orders No.227(1) this Petition stands committed to the relevant standing committee. In this case, it is the Standing Committee on Finance, Commerce and Budget. In terms of Standing Orders No227(2), the Committee will be required, in not more than 60 days from the time of reading the prayer, to respond to the petitioner by way of a report addressed to the petitioner and laid on the Table of this Senate.
Hon. Senators, I want to bring to your attention the Petition by Mr. Tony Watima on the need to address instances of conflict of interest in the Public Service. Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Order No.221(a) and 225(2)(b), I hereby report to the Senate that a petition has been submitted through the Clerk by Mr. Tony Watima, a resident of Nairobi County on the need to comprehensively address the The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I thank the gentleman who brought the Petition to this House. Now that we are approaching elections, I am happy to have read in the newspapers today – I do not know whether it will be applied or not – that under the integrity requirement, all the people who are being investigated by the Ethics and Anti- Corruption Commission (EACC) will not be allowed to present their nomination papers. This House being responsible for the welfare of counties should rethink and bring a Bill here to emphasise that all the governors facing investigations or whose cases are pending in court should not be allowed to present themselves for election. Thank you Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this Petition is very important in the fight against corruption in the country. Since the misguided Ndegwa Commission findings of 1965 that allowed civil servant to dabble in business, this country has taken a completely wrong and dangerous turn in the management of public affairs. If you look at the country, all the filthy rich people in this country, or at least about 90 per cent, are people who have worked in Government. They have been sitting in Government offices and working for themselves. The same is now happening in county governments. Within no time, junior officers who were appointed have a fleet of cars and all manner of possessions. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we do not want to criminalize business but conflict of interest must be looked at and taken care of. So, I support the petitioner. Whichever committee that will look at this matter, I would like it not to superficially look at the petition as it comes to them but to go and look for the Ndegwa Commission Report of 1965 and see how a new legislation can be crafted to tame the conflict of interest that we see today. Even Members of Parliament (MPs) are busy sneaking into Ministries and public offices and arm-twisting people to give them businesses but when they are found, they say “it was not me.” Then, they start putting up fictitious names and say it was so and so. This must be addressed. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this is something I am happy with. The issue of corruption has grown roots to even our villages. I thank the petitioner for coming up with this petition. The issue of corruption has been addressed over the years. I have heard that there has been a commission since 1960s to curb corruption. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, while supporting the petitioner, what we need to do is to come up with a Motion banning all corrupt members of the public and in Parliament from vying for any position in this country. I thank you.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, as said by the Senate Minority Leader, the late President Kenyatta had a vision for the Public Service. However, when mandarins of Kiambu Mafia took advantage of his age and brought in the Ndegwa Commission which then allowed public servants to do business with Government; that is where the rain started beating us. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we must support this particular Petition because there is a case in Nigeria---
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Could the Senator explain to this House who he is referring to as Kiambu Mafia?
Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, did you use the words “Kiambu Mafia?”
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I said the then Kiambu Mafia of 1963 to 1978. I did not have any intention of referring to any mafia in Kiambu as of now. I was very clear. I do not know if there is one.
Sen. Wangari, are you satisfied?
No, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. This is a House of records. If that information is in the public domain, could Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale take the trouble to tell this House and the country who is or was Kiambu Mafia?
Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, I heard Sen. Wangari. You are referring to the Ndegwa Commission, for instance. That is a commission that is well documented and everybody knows about it. So, you can refer to that one because it will pass since it is a well-known commission. However, Sen. Wangari is asking you to tell her what Kiambu Mafia is or who it is.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, because of your age, I have to educate you on this one. The Kiambu Mafia of 1963 to 1978 was a clique of people sometimes referred to as “Members of the Kitchen Cabinet” or Members of---
Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, you are going to withdraw that statement or substantiate it. The question that Sen. Wangari is asking you is to clarify to her who you referred to as the Kiambu mafia of 1963 to 1970. Do you have a list?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this is a matter that is in the public domain. They included all the current members of the rich families of Kiambu. Consistent with the finding in all African governments, the richest African families are those that have either been in control of Government or have been in high places of Government. I cannot be expected to substantiate the obvious. If you do not want to waste the time of the House, go and read. This is a fact of history. I conclude by saying that this matter must be taken seriously because in Nigeria there is a governor who hid his money in the United Kingdom (UK) ---- The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Your time is up.
Can I conclude?
Order, your time is up. Sen. Sijeny, proceed.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to commend the person who has brought this Petition. This is a nation that everybody must have a hand in developing. As they say, change begins with you. This Kenyan citizen has decided that in order to get Kenya back to where it was; a country of integrity, corruption-free and one with peace--- Kenya was never known for corruption as it is nowadays. We find the people in the civil service are the same people who are supposed to be protecting the money or the interests of Kenyans. They are also the ones who ensure that they get the maximum out of it. If this Petition is looked into properly, we will certainly yield the fruits of devolution because the resources will trickle down to Wanjiku instead of remaining in the pockets of a few people. In the transport sector, for example, it is the police officers who control most of the public vehicles. They always ensure that Wanjiku suffers and is unable to do business because someone is protecting their interest. I support.
Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Order No.227(1), the Petition stands committed to the relevant committee, in this case the Standing Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights. In terms of Standing Order No.227(2), the Committee will be required in not more than 60 days from the time of reading this prayer to respond to the petitioner by way of a report addressed to the petitioner and laid on the Table of the Senate.
ALLEGED MISUSE AND DIVERSION OF PUBLIC FUNDS BY VIHIGA COUNTY GOVERNMENT Hon. Senators, I wish to present a Petition by Mr. Julius Masiva Obuga concerning alleged misuse and diversion of public funds by the Vihiga County Government. Pursuant to Standing Order No.221(a) and 225(2)(b) I hereby report to the Senate that a Petition has been submitted through the Clerk by Mr. Julius Masiva Obuga, a resident of Vihiga County, concerning alleged misuse and diversion of public funds by the Vihiga County Government. In the Petition the Petitioner states:- (a) That the County Government of Vihiga failed to account for how the sum of Kshs1.6 billion allocated toward development expenditure in the Financial Year 2014/2015 was utilized. (b) That the County Government of Vihiga further redirected the sum of Kshs100 million allocated towards the Emergency Fund to other purposes. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I am now aware that the Petition you have read is similar to an earlier one presented by Sen. Khaniri. Is there any explanation why the earlier Petition has taken long to be presented to the House by the relevant Committee?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Having noted that the Petition being presented to the House today is similar to a Petition that is already in Committee, is it in order that it should be allowed?
Sen. Abdirhaman, I see you have stood on a point of order.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, while I agree that this may be similar to the Vihiga County Assembly Petition, there were similar ones from a number of counties that were concluded by the Committee and sent to state agencies. It is important for us to know why this has not been acted upon. The answer more or less lies with our Committee. Let them tell us what the position is.
Let me put it differently. The points of order that have been raised are relevant. I did not say that this Petition is the same as the one raised by Sen. Khaniri. I said it is fairly similar. I cannot stop any petitioner from bringing a petition on any matter. In any case, this Petitioner most likely has no knowledge that Sen. Khaniri brought a fairly similar Petition. That is why it has been committed to the same Committee and the reason I am allowing very little time for The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of information, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Who do you want to inform, Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would like to inform Sen. Abdirahman Hassan and Sen. Obure on that point of order. It is true that this Petition has taken too long for two reasons; the first one is that Governor Akaranga took refuge in courts. He attempted to have the courts injunct us and we could not proceed. After that, the injunction was removed and therefore, we were able to move. Because of the seriousness of the monies that are involved, the Chairman of the Committee on Finance, Commerce and Budgeting is here and he could help us by telling the House why he has failed over these months to convene a sitting of the Members of the Committee because we are under a lot of pressure locally and the Chairman does not call us to deal with this matter.
Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, I thought you rose to inform the House of something but now you are making demands. Can you resume your seat now? Hon. Senators, I do not think that this is a matter that needs to be protracted. I think if you have any comment to make, I will allow not more than ten minutes and I can see a few requests.
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I want to thank the petitioners from Vihiga County. In fact, I want to thank the people of Vihiga because they have been very vigilant; they have brought to the Senate and the National Assembly several petitions regarding the management of their county. On the previous Petition, the reason why we have not been able to execute it properly or on time is because there is still a court case. The Governor refused to come and the matter went all the way and eventually he went to court and has filed a petition in court and that case has not been determined. We are still waiting for that case to be determined so that he can appear before this Committee. There is nothing else we can do about that. However, regarding the issues they have raised, particularly on the first part of the Petition; this is important. It refers to issue of the county leasing equipment and the money being banked in private accounts. I think this is really a matter of concern. We have seen this in the case of Bungoma and other counties where they have been banking money in personal accounts. Like Sen. Abdirahman Hassan has said, we have committed some of these cases to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for action. As a matter of fact, while we were on recess I saw some progress in the case of Bungoma with regard to the purchase of wheel barrows where a few people have been taken to court and actually charged. I think the Implementation Committee of the House deals with the follow up on cases that we have referred to either the EACC or the DPP. I agree that many of these things are happening in counties and, on some of them, we have executed and recommended prosecution.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, first I would like to commend Vihiga County Assembly for this very well thought-out Petition. Secondly, for the many cases The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, irrespective of how many petitions may be raised with respect to the activities in Vihiga County, they are very important in this House. Those of us who are in the County Public Accounts and Investments Committee see a trend where the audit system is a sampling system. The Governors have crafted all manner of ways of embezzling funds and, somehow, they are able to compromise the auditors so that they look at one item and not another one. Sometimes the Senate Committee may be spending a lot of time on cents and not shillings and pounds. So, if we have petitioners who are courageous enough to pick items which they know for sure, that there has been malfeasance, it is very important for this House to look at that petition. Allow me to mention that this House came up with a County Development Board whose part of the agenda was that by the time the accounts for a particular County come before the Senate, a Member of the Senate from that County would have had an insight on items which may have been deliberately or inadvertently left out in the audit system. This Audit is very important and we should request the relevant Committee to do its work expeditiously so that we can start unraveling the mess in that county.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also commend the member of the public who has brought this Petition. It is noteworthy that that Assembly escalated such issues to this House and I would not be surprised if Members of the Cabinet decide to petition this House. It just shows you the level of impunity that is there at the local level. My concern is on our processing of the Auditor-General’s reports as a Senate. It is not all the counties where the 2013/2014 reports have been adopted by this House. Even where the reports have been adopted, there are recommendations that have been made. For those of us who live in those counties we know that the recommendations have not been acted upon. I wish to also call on the Committee looking into this matter to come up with clear recommendations on implementation and follow up. I would also want to recommend that we set up a liaison office between this office and the EACC because some of the recommendations touch on recovery or action that should be taken by the EACC. When we recommend and nothing happens, when we go back to our counties, the corrupt laugh at us. They say; “You thought you got us but this time around we got a better way of going about it”. Let me propose that we have a liaison office with the relevant bodies for expeditious implementation of our recommendations.
Hon. Senators, as earlier directed, the Petition stands committed to the relevant Committee, in this case the Standing Committee on Finance, Commerce and Budget. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this is a Petition. So, we cannot say we allow or we do not allow it. It has come. However, I would like to suggest that this Mr. Gwada Ogot is quite misguided. Maybe this person has not seen the way a person who has consumed cannabis sativa looks. They cannot tell where the car is or where the land is. They cannot know who to engage with and whom to fight with for no reason. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, since we have not had sight of the Petition, it will be interesting to know if Mr. Gwada Ogot confesses to be a consumer of this substance. Any attempts to legalise the growth, transportation or consumption of cannabis sativa, commonly called bhang - in my area it is called Omusala . It is also called Injaka . It has all manner of names – is to take the country the wrong way. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, if you have had an opportunity to see a person who has abused this substance ---
I do not think people consume it. They abuse it. They look so dazed that a person would be looking at you, staring at you but cannot tell who you are and still demanding to be given some more substance to consume. I believe this will go to the Committee on Health. I want to encourage this Committee to come out very clearly in reemphasizing the provisions of the Psychotropic Substances Act that was passed in the last Parliament. It criminalizes and outlaws the growth, transportation and consumption of any such substances. Legalizing the consumption of bhang is akin to legalizing prostitution, pimping and all manner of social vices.
The interest here is a bit too much. I do not know why there should be so much interest in cannabis sativa. I will allow not more than two minutes for any person who wants to contribute on this. Who is temporary 1? Who is using a temporary card? Okay, they do not know who they are. Proceed, Sen. Billow.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, Uruguay was the first country to legalise the use of cannabis sativa in 2013. There are not many countries. In fact, even in the United States of America (USA), the debate is still on in many of the states. In Canada, they are likely to look at it this year. It is only Netherlands and a few countries. The objective was that it would eliminate illegal trade in cannabis sativa. That has not happened. Even in those countries where they have allowed it for medicinal use, it has not, in any way reduced the illegal consumption. Certainly, we are a country where our youths are having crisis even with the basic tobacco so that Parliament has to legislate extensively on its use. Forget about many other problems we are having. I agree with what my colleagues said earlier; that, the petitioner clearly seems to have some other agenda for pushing for this thing. It is not about medicinal use. We have not seen this even in the developed world. The USA is the most developed country and cancer kills over a quarter million people annually. If this thing was in fact, being used, they would not be outlawing it in many of the states.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, fortunately the gentleman is known to me. However, the Committee should deal with this matter very carefully. It is a very sensitive The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
What is your point of order, Sen. Wetangula?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Did you hear Sen. Sijeny say that the distinguished Senator for Nyamira is an expert on cannabis sativa? Is he an expert as a consumer, a grower, a transporter or in any way associated with this illicit substance?
Order, Sen. Wetangula. I notice that the distinguished Senator for Nyamira is here and he did not raise a point of order. So, why do we not leave it at that?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, he is a presidential candidate. So, he should relax. I join my colleagues in recognizing that, although we have freedom of brining petitions to be handled in the Senate, the National Assembly or any county assembly, there are some petitions which we should not even encourage. How can a Kenyan in the right state of mind think of encouraging this? This is in view of the damages that consumption of this has caused in Kenya. The issue of drugs has been in the limelight recently. The President and his deputy were in Mombasa trying to destroy some of the drugs that have caused havoc in Kenya. Although it may generate money the way the petitioner is suggesting, it leads to destruction of lives and families and causes a lot of disorder. I suggest that as the Committee handles this Petition, it should even propose more penalties for people who entertain this. They should look at the Act and enhance some of the penalties so that Kenyans would not think about this.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I take a different view from my colleagues. I thank this particular petitioner, Mr. Ogot, for bringing this Petition. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, every dark cloud has a silver lining. We have seen the trend globally that marijuana is now being exploited for some benefits beyond the smoking and intoxication. We have seen the rise of medicinal cannabis and we have seen the use of other drugs for their industrial properties. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I encourage the committee that will be looking at this to look at the matter with an open mind. In the rolling hills and valleys of Gwasi in Homa Bay County where I come from, this plant grows wild. I do not think anyone here went to Tonga High School. There is a school called Tonga High School where the plant grew as a weed and it was very difficult for teachers to control it. If our soil can support it, then The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I may have heard it wrongly but is he in order to suggest that in the hills and valleys of Homa Bay, marijuana grows wildly? Is he suggesting that marijuana grows wildly and, consequently, is consumed by some people?
I did not hear him say that it is consumed freely. I understood him to say that it grows as a weed in the rolling hills of Gwasi in Homa Bay.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Did you hear Sen. M. Kajwang talk about a secondary school? Could he clarify in what context he mentioned the secondary school? Did he mention it in relation to this plant?
Sen. M. Kajwang, you mentioned Tonga High School. What was that in context to?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, Tonga High School lies in a place called Magunga. That is the centre of Gwasi which is an area where marijuana was not planted by human beings but it is a weed.
The question is, in what context is Tonga High School?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I was giving an example of a situation where you have put in place all the controls and laws and rules but the plant just grows from the earth.
I think that is understood. Sen. Wangari.
Order Senators! You must also respect any contrary view coming from other Senators. All of us do not have to take the same view on this issue.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, there is a reason Sen. M. Kajwang asked whether there is anyone in this House who schooled in Tonga and there was none. Maybe he should tell us where those who schooled in Tonga High School ended up. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, as much as there is freedom to present any petition as has been granted by the Constitution, I also feel that, in some instances, this right is being abused. My view on the Petition is that as the investigation is done by the Committee, let us also investigate the bad effects of cannabis on communities. As we struggle with drug abuse and extradition to different countries on these issues, the Committee needs to investigate the bad effects to communities, young men who are unable to raise families due to consumption of bhang and our kids who have refused to go to school due to the consumption of cannabis sativa. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I must say Sen. Okong’o is a public property since he will be running for presidency. So, he should tell the House why he is an expert on cannabis sativa.
Order! Are you through? The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Yes, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
I do not want you to bait your colleague Senators on the issue. Sen. (Dr.) Machage, you have two minutes.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am really sure this will be brought to the Committee on Health and it will be interesting to listen to the petitioner and the reasons and scientific information he may have on this. I moved a Motion in this House about three years on declaring drug and substance abuse as a national disaster and it was passed by this very House although the Committee on Implementation has never picked up on it. It is true that many countries have picked on some of these drugs and legalised their use. Chang’aa which is a locally brewed alcohol in Kenya, is not illegal in Tanzania. The Government there allows people to brew chang’aa but you do not sell to the people but to the Government. The Government buys it from the people and refines it to produce Konyagi, which is a very popular drink everywhere. So, as at now, I will not have a negative view on the petitioner. Maybe I will agree that this petition is allowed and we listen to it carefully. In Tanzania, the same “weed” is grown. Most of it is found in Kenya and people are arrested in Kenya but not in Tanzania. Maybe, we will have to look at their laws. This is not abused in Tanzania. So, there are a lot of things to look at on this plant.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, everything which is created could have its positive and negative aspects. We normally buy “all practices” to allow what has more benefits and reject what has more negative effects and this could be one reason. So, I would like the petition to be submitted to the relevant committee to advise the individual as to why generally the plant has been outlawed and why we cannot insist on a small medicinal value and allow its abuse by the majority. I thank you.
Sen. Okong’o, you may now explain yourself if you choose.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is incumbent upon any Kenyan to bring a petition. Prima facie, I do not agree with my colleagues who dismissed that petitioner. Secondly, I have heard statements when I was partly around. I do not say things that I do not understand. I grew up in an environment where cannabis sativa was rampant in use during my childhood. As a juvenile, I indulged heavily in that but it did not distract me anywhere I went.
I happened to have my studies in India which is one of the largest democracies in the world where by virtue of my background it was available for me but I chose not to use it. The question is abuse. If we have strict regulations, then we can use them as a deterrent. It is rampantly abused in the country because of the laws which criminalize it. The question is abuse but has the Government managed to deal with the issues? If you regulate it strictly, then it will be a deterrent and that is what I am saying.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Before we contribute to the debate, and given that Sen. Okong’o has said he knows this stuff and has used it, The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Sen. Okong’o, there are many points of order and I suspect they are directed at you. Let us listen to all of them. You may be able to deal them at once. Members, let us be brief. Sen. Wangari, proceed.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, you understand why that necessitated the explanation of the “expert”. However, I would like the Senator to explain whether he still partakes---
Can you call him an expert?
He said he is an expert and he has used it. Could he tell us whether he is still using it today or it was those days when he was a juvenile?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. This is a serious matter. The hon. Senator has announced his intention to vie for the presidency of this Republic. Having confirmed in this House that he has indulged in using Marijuana, could he tell the country that if he, indeed, in the unlikely event he becomes the President, will it be part of his policy to legalise the use of marijuana in this country?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. This is very interesting and it might help us shed some light on some of the ambitions the Senator has. When he declared that he was running for the presidency, against all odds we wondered what was happening to him. Could he confirm that he might have partaken of this particular obnoxious substance before he made the announcement and that this could have influenced his decision on the kind of ambition he seems to harbor?
Sen. Sang, that is not a fair point of order. Sen. Haji.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we should not be unfair to Sen. Okong’o for being honest in saying that when he was a young man he used to smoke these things. That should not stop him from being the President of this country because Bill Clinton also admitted to smoking and he was the most senior head of state in the world. The only advice I will give to the Committee is that this gentleman should be invited and listened to halafu apewe pili pili kali amezee ili imwashe kama anataka hivyo .
Sen. Okong’o, do you have any response to this? Do not feel obliged, but if you want to comment on the points of order you can do so.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, to Sen. Billow, this is a substance I used a long time ago and it has never informed my decision to become the President of the Republic of Kenya. The problem with Kenyans is that they are living in denial. That is why we are in all this mix. If you want a discussion on this, you require the Senate to hold a workshop. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Finally, Sen. (Prof.) Lesan, on the main debate.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I also wish to make a brief comment on this. The Petition has asked that we decriminalize and legalize the plant. We must be aware that there are many varieties of this plant. There is a lot of research that is going on, on this. If we look at the regulations that deal with narcotic drugs in Kenya at the moment, the level of information that we are having on these drugs is extensive. It is important not only to legalise but to look at the entire regulations that guide all narcotic substances, particularly in view of the nature of the population that we have. It is quite in order that this Petition is here. We will look at all its aspects in terms of regulations; whether we decriminalize or not. It is a question of how we look at the by- products of the plant. The Senator has said this is a weed that grows everywhere and, therefore, we do not need to decriminalize it. We are more concerned about the products of this plant when they have been processed. This is where regulations must be put in place, based on research which is emerging at the moment. I support that this Petition is rightly here. Being a Member of the Committee on Health, we advise that we also be involved in looking at it.
Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Order No.227(1), the Petition stands committed to the relevant Standing Committee, it this case, the Standing Committee on Health. In terms of Standing Order No.227(2), the Committee will be required, in not more than 60 days from the time of reading the prayer, to respond to the Petitioner by way of a report addressed to him and laid on the Table of the Senate.
ALLEGED WRONGFUL RETIREMENT BY THE PSC OF GROBAC MAGARE OMAYO Hon. Senators, I have the final Petition by Grobac Magare Omayo on alleged wrongful retirement by the Public Service Commission (PSC). Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Order No.220(1)(a) and 225(2)(b), I hereby report to the Senate that a Petition has been submitted through the Clerk by Mr. Grobac Magare Omaye, a resident of Nyamira County on his alleged wrongful retirement by the PSC. In his Petition, the Petitoner states:- (a) That he served as a Senior Livestock Production Assistant under the then Ministry of Livestock until October, 2009 when his employment was discontinued on the The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am aware of a similar case from Mandera County of the then Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development whose issue has not been resolved to date. It is important that the PSC takes into consideration matters that relate to staff development. An employee trying to pursue further studies is an important thing. They become an asset in terms of career development and providing better services. It is important for this case to be considered. I suppose it will be referred to the Committee on Labour and Social Welfare. It is important that we give it the due consideration that it deserves. There may be many other silent Kenyans out there who need to be considered.
Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Order No.227(1), the Petition stands committed to the relevant Standing Committee, in this case, the Standing Committee on Labour and Social Welfare. In terms of Standing Order No.227 (2), the Committee will be required, in not more than 60 days from the time of reading the prayer, to respond to the petitioner by way of a report addressed to the petitioner and laid on the table of the Senate.
I beg to give notice of the following Motion:- THAT, notwithstanding the provisions of standing order 249, the Senate resolves to vary the period within which the Procedure and Rules Committee should make its The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to give notice of the following Motion:- THAT, pursuant to Section 7 of the Climate Change Act, 2016, Section 8 (1) of the Public Appointments (Parliamentary Approval) Act 2011 and the Senate Standing Order No.65, the Senate adopts the report of the Joint Sitting of the Senate Standing Committee on Land and Natural Resources and the National Assembly Departmental Committee on Environment and Natural Resources on the vetting of nominees for appointment to the National Climate Change Council, laid on the table of the Senate on Wednesday, December 28th 2016, and approves the recommendations of the committee as follows:- (1) Approves the nomination of Mr. Suresh Patel and Mr. John Kioli for the appointment to the National Climate Change Council; (2) Rejects the nomination of Ms. Cynthia Wechabe and Dr. Jane Mutheu for appointment to the National Climate Change Council; (3) Recommends that the appointing authority submits nominees of the female gender to represent the marginalized communities and the Commission for University Education as prescribed by the Public Appointments, (Parliamentary Approval) Act.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I rise pursuant to Standing Order No.45 (2) (b) to seek a statement from the Chairperson of the Standing Committee on Devolved Government concerning the plight and welfare of former Councillors under Kenya’s defunct local authorities. In the Statement, the Chairperson should: (1) State whether the Ministry of Devolution and Planning is aware of the following recommendations of the Senate Committee on Labour and Social Welfare in response to the Petition by the Forum of the Former Councillors for Legislative interventions to address the plight and welfare of former councillors. (a) The Payment of a one off honorarium of Kshs1.5 million per former councilor having served a minimum of one term since Independence. (b) A monthly pension of at least Kshs30,000. (c) Access to the premises and facilities of county assemblies including canteens and speakers’ galleries. (d) Exemption from paying parking fees, other rates and fees within the area they served. (2) The measures the Ministry has taken to implement the above recommendations. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I want to ride on what Sen. Sang has said that we have the Senate Implementation Committee that has been mandated to always follow up what the Senate has resolved. What has this Committee done with regard to this urgent request from the former councilors? This request was unanimously approved by this Senate last year. Could the Committee that you will assign this task to be able to inquire from the Cabinet Secretary for Devolution why he has not prioritized this resolution, given the nature of the question and the nature of the need of the said persons?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I would also like to ride on the request for a Statement. There are counties that have set aside budgets to pay former councillors coming from those respective counties. An example is Siaya and Migori counties that have set aside substantial budgets because they appreciate the suffering of these former councillors who laid the foundation for the local authorities that eventually made up the counties that we have today. I would like, in that statement, to find out whether making budgets for the former councillors is in line with the Public Finance Management Principles and requirements.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, in relation to the question that has been raised, in the statement, could the Cabinet Secretary also state the plight of healthcare and particularly allocation for NHIF and medical allowances for the councillors? It is a fact that former councillors are suffering out there and if we who are in these Houses do not speak and take care of them, the same thing is going to happen to us when we are out of here.
Sen. Kembi-Gitura): Sen. Kagwe, are you planning to be out of here? Now, Sen. Sang, I do not know how we are going to deal with this situation. It is a little bit complicated because I notice that Sen. (Prof.) Lonyangapuo had sought a statement related to the same issue sometimes in September 2015. He sought an answer on this issue and the Standing Committee on Labour and Social Welfare gave a report on 16th February, 2016. A copy of the response was forwarded to the petitioners pursuant to Standing Order No. 228 in February 2016. I am assuming that you are seeking a statement from the Ministry of Devolution, but in my view, the matter is substantially spent. Therefore, what we should be doing in my view is to ask the Implementation Committee to tell us how far it has reached as pertains to the implementation of what the committee resolved in the petition brought by Sen. (Prof.) Lonyangapuo. I think, essentially, that is what you are pursuing. My direction would be that, even before I commit the request for a Statement from the Committee on Devolved Government, once the Implementation Committee is formed in the next week or so, they should come to this House and make a report pursuant to your request and also pursuant to what was decided when Sen. (Prof.) Lonyangapuo sought the Statement on how far it has gone in implementing what that Committee recommended. That should be the correct route to follow because if we go The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, that direction suffices. I hope that the Committee will realise the very urgent nature of this matter. As we speak, most of the county assemblies are discussing about the pension and gratuity of the Members of County Assembly (MCAs). It is important that we include this group of Kenyans, who as Sen. M. Kajwang said, set the foundation for our counties. If the Committee can be given one week till Thursday, that would be important. however, I would request that you also direct, if that would be appropriate, the leader of Majority so that at the end of the day, whereas we are expecting a report from the Committee on Implementation which will have to find out from the Ministry, if we can also include the services of our Majority Leader to expedite that process of getting a response, it would be important.
I hear you. This is a Sessional Committee. So, as soon as the Sessional Committee is formed, on Tuesday I would like you to raise the issue again so that we set timelines when the Committee on Implementation will give that answer on the way forward. So, I am putting it upon you to do that on Tuesday. Sen. Wangari, what is your point of order? Is it on the same issue?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. It is on the same, if you allow. It is just to back up your ruling. I sat in the Committee on Labour and Social Welfare that deliberated on this issue. We called the former councillors. We had many proper meetings. We need a report from the Committee on Implementation. Let them tell us how far the issue has been resolved. That would be the right way instead of redoing it again.
That is exactly what I have ruled. Sen. Sang, are you not satisfied yet?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, that is fine. On Tuesday, I might be in the county campaigning. Would you allow Sen. (Prof.) Lonyangapuo to stand in for me?
Sen. Sang, I have made that direction; where you shall be, we shall be. What we shall be doing ---
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I was requesting to allow Sen. (Prof.) Lonyangapuo to stand in for me if I will not be around.
I have made a ruling on that. Who does it is neither here nor there. What is your point of order, Sen. (Dr.) Machage?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. If Sen. Sang may listen, is he in order to declare on the Floor of this House that on Tuesday he will be in the constituency campaigning when the campaigning has not yet been declared by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC)?
He did not say he would be campaigning for what. Maybe it would be for a medical event or something else. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I heard Sen. M. Kajwang saying that some arrangements have been made at the county governments for some councillors to be paid. Is that procedural? If so, why can’t other counties be paid?
Did he talk about councillors or MCAs?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, he said councillors.
Let put it this way; we have a matter that has to do with the Senate in front of us. I have absolutely no control of what is happening in individual counties. That matter has not been brought to my attention. So, let me deal with what is in front of me which is the statement sought by Sen. Sang on which I have ruled. Hon. Senators, before we go to the next order, I have two short messages from the National Assembly. I have a Message from the National Assembly on the decision of the National Assembly on the Health Bill (National Assembly Bill No.14 of 2015) and the Public Fundraising Appeals Bill (Senate Bill No.28 of 2014)
Hon. Senators, the second message from the National Assembly is on the passage of Division of Revenue Bill (National Assembly Bill No.2 of 2017). Hon. Senators, I wish to report to the Senate that pursuant to Standing Order No.40(3) and (4), I have received the following Message from the Speaker of the National Assembly regarding the passage by the National Assembly of the Division of Revenue Bill (National Assembly Bill No.2 of 2017). I will quote:- “Pursuant to the provisions of Standing Orders No. 41 and 142 of the National Assembly Standing Orders, I hereby convey the following Message from the National Assembly. WHEREAS, the Division of Revenue Bill (National Assembly Bill No.2 of 2017) was published by the Kenya Gazette Supplement No.2 of 6th January, 2017 to provide for equitable division of revenue raised between the national and county governments in the 2017/2018 Financial Year; WHEREAS, on 9th and 14th February, 2017, the National Assembly considered and passed the said Bill without amendments and in the form attached hereto; NOW THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of Article 110(4) of the Constitution and Standing Order No.41 of the National Assembly Standing Orders, I hereby refer the Bill to the Senate for consideration.” Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Order No.148 which requires that a Bill which originates in the National Assembly be proceeded with by the Senate in the same manner as a Bill introduced in the Senate by way of first reading in accordance with Standing Order No.129, I now direct that the Division of Revenue Bill (National Assembly Bill No.2 of 2017) be listed for First Reading in the Order Paper of tomorrow, Thursday, 16th February, 2017. I thank you. Next Order! The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Hon. Senators I will re-organize the Order Paper so that Order No.14 is stood down for now, to be re-listed later.
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I am surprised that you have indicated that you want to stand down Item No.14 on the Order Paper which basically is the County Pension Scheme Bill (Senate Bill No.20 of 2016). I have not been consulted as the Chairperson. It was only a few minutes ago when the Senate Majority Leader walked to me and told me that he wanted this matter stood down. As the chairperson, this should have been brought to me in advance. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
What is your point of order Sen. Abdirahman?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this particular Bill relates to the counties where we have a huge number of workers whose plight has not yet been considered and we know that we are coming to the end of our term. I am a Member of the Committee on Labour and Social Welfare. A lot of time and energy has been spent developing this Bill and it is important to prioritize it. I am told that this time round, as we move to the next one or two months, priority is being given by the HBC to Bills that touch on counties. I am not saying that you should not stand it down. However, as pledged, with your kind consideration, let us have it tomorrow if it is stood down today.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I join my Chairman, Sen. Madzayo, in urging the Chair to see the importance of this Bill and the enormous amount of work and consultation with every imaginable stakeholder and interest groups. Hearing that it is being stood down after about two years of extensive work, I urge the Chair to allow this Bill to go for the First Reading so that whatever other interests are concerned, they should come in a procedural way. The Constitution has allowed that any of these views and interest groups are heard during public hearings or petitions as presented. Whatever reasons there are, the House, through the Committee on Labour and Social Welfare will look at them. The House has no obligation to accept the Bill, but it should be given the opportunity to follow procedures and the Bill to go through the First Reading which is purely procedural. The rest of the stages will follow in the normal manner. I urge you to allow the First Reading to take place and issues from other interest groups to be brought during appropriate sessions of public hearings of the Bill.
These are points of order. Let us make them brief.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I will be brief. I do not rise to challenge you. However, I still do not feel convinced why we need to stand down the First Reading of this Bill.
What reasons were given, Sen. Wangari?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, just what the Chairperson has presented to the House.
I am the one who said I am standing it down. What reasons did I give?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I hear you and I am well advised. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
You should be.
Moving forward, this Bill has gone through pre-publication consultations by the time it got here. It is an urgent Bill. As we approach elections, I do not know why we need to delay the First Reading and yet we have 30 days of interactions if anyone has any issue to raise on the Bill. I urge that you reconsider that the First Reading be done. Let any other interactions be done during public participation.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this will be the first time a Bill is being presented for First Reading and it is stood down. We have had one such Bill in this House. We have had very protracted discussions about pensions. If you look at the importance of this Bill and the kind of suffering that county staff and workers are going through, the uncertainty with regard to which institution is handling their pension, future and fate, it would make sense if this Bill was to go through the First Reading and then, afterwards, any other concerns will be dealt with. We have a long legislative process; from the First Reading, Second Reading, Committee stage, Third Reading and also public participation. It does not present a very good picture if we delay a Bill even at First Reading. I agree that even if the consultations were to take place and there is need to---
Sen. Sang, I have heard you. You have made your point.
Could I conclude, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir?
I have heard you. Proceed, Sen. Elachi.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, first, we should understand that this is a very sensitive matter. Last year when we were about to embark on this Bill, we had a lot of consultations with the Council of Governors and a lot of interruptions came in. If the Majority Leader has the Bill that he is talking about, he should meet with the Chairperson, sit and agree and then next week we move on without the interruptions we are having so that this Bill moves forward. The Bill deals with the lives of those who are currently employed at the counties. Governors are political officers who are about to go to campaign. They will forget the remuneration and pensions of the staff at the counties. If we tackle this Bill, we will have helped the counties.
Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki, what do you have to say about this? I must bring the points of order to an end at one point or the other.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): I would like to bring to perspective three things. One, initially, I was the sponsor of an earlier version of this Bill. It did not go through Second Reading and the House committed the task to the Committee. Secondly, thereafter, consultations have been going on, some spearheaded by the Committee but others by the IBEC which is the body established under the Inter Governmental Relations Act. It is chaired by the Deputy President and includes the Council of Governors, the Commission on Revenue Allocation and the National Treasury. I have attended two of the IBEC meetings around the same issue. I shared with the Chairperson of the Committee progress that--- The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
Are you not on a point of order, Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki?
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I was waiting for guidance. On the issue of IBEC---
Sen. Madzayo, what is your point of order?
Kwa jambo la nidhamu Bw. Naibu Spika. Ndani ya Bunge ya Seneti kuna mtu ameingia ambaye hatumfahamu ni mtu wa aina gani. Hatujui kama ni Seneta ama ni mtu wa kutoka nje. Ningetaka ifafanulie wazi kama huyu mtu ana haki ya kuketi hapa ndani ama atupwe nje.
I now do not understand what point we are dealing with now because we were on points of order. What is it, Sen. (Dr.) Machage?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, as you consider Sen. Madzayo’s point of order, consider the rules of this House on definition of proper dressing which simply means putting on a coat. They do not define what type of coat. It also means having a dress that covers your hands. It does not define what type of clothes to cover the hands. The neck must have a tie. It does not describe the type of tie.
What is your point of order, Sen. (Dr.) Machage?
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. Is Sen. Madzayo in order to consider Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale badly dressed in the House?
Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, an issue has been raised on your mode of dress. Are you properly dressed?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am wearing a long sleeved shirt, a tie and a trouser. On top of the shirt, I am covered in a white coat.
(Sen. Kembi-Gitura) Take your seat, Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale. I want to refer you to the Speaker’s Rules which are part of what guides us here and it talks about the conduct of Senators within the precincts of Parliament. Rule No.5 reads: “Senators are not required to enter the Chamber, lounge or dining room without being properly dressed”. This means that a Senator shall be dressed in a coat, collar, tie, long rousers, socks and shoes or service uniform or decent national uniform for men or an equivalent standard for women. Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, are you wearing a coat?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am sorry that the coat I am wearing has writings on it about the health crisis.
Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, I will not be involved in an altercation. You know what a coat is and you were earlier on here in the House and you were properly dressed, at least in a coat and a tie, you have gone and The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
No. On this point, I have made a ruling.
People have come here dressed like CJs and the Speaker has never thrown them out.
Order Sen. Wetangula. I am in control of the House right now, and on the mode of dress, I have made a ruling and I will for the final time say that Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale was in the House earlier on and in my view he was properly dressed and the issue was not raised. He has gone somewhere, changed, and come without a coat. So, I am ordering that Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale is not in proper attire for the Senate.
On a point of order Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir.
The matter of the dress is finished because as far as I am concerned, that for me is a clear case. It is an obvious situation. Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, you are one of the most experienced legislators in this House and you know that when that ruling is made, you have to withdraw from the House, go and get properly dressed and come back, if you wish to.
On a point of order.
Hon. Senators, I have finished on the issue of dress and I am not going to revisit it. Sen. (Dr.) Khalwale, I am ordering that you withdraw from the House to either go and dress properly and come back or stay out of the House. The choice is yours.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it was because of the health crisis.
I have heard you but I am only saying that you are not properly dressed. That is the point I am making.
Hon. Senators, we were on a point of order on the issue of Order No.14 on the Order Paper and Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki was on his feet.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I was explaining how IBEC which is the Intergovernmental, Budget and Economic Council has also been consulting. A sub committee was formed to liaise with all stakeholders chaired by the Cabinet Secretary and the Chairman of the Council of Governors. I want to understand my brother’s pain because this thing has taken a bit of time and it is true that there has been pull and push around it. What happened is that after that meeting of IBEC, it was decided that all stakeholders will come with one Bill which they have all approved. In December, I am told that that process was concluded and I have got a letter from the CS, Treasury saying that they have agreed on the version. When I saw this Bill on the Order Paper, I thought it was the agreed version, but I got information from the CS, Treasury - I think that is the one the Chairman is calling a The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Let me make it easy for all of us because I have heard Sen. Madzayo and he had occasion to discuss it with me. Could I hear from Sen. Madzayo?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is extremely sad for me as the Chairman to hear that there is another body outside this Senate that discusses issues that are before this House and that those bodies are so powerful to an extent that an Order Paper can today be overruled because of certain issues. There must be substantive reasons given by anybody who wants to move that this Bill should actually not go through the First Reading. There are no substantive reasons which have been given. The Senate Leader of Majority just came to me and went back there and said that we had discussed. I think this House should be serious. Anything that appears on the Order Paper should be given its due consideration. It is going to be in vain if this Committee will burn the midnight oil handling this matter and then it is just done away with in that manner. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg you to listen to what I am saying. You do not seem to be.
Sen. Madzayo, I am listening to you.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. We have gone through this Bill with the stakeholders page by page. We have looked at all of them. None has been left out; including the Council of Governors (CoG), the National Treasury, the Retirement Benefits Authority (RBA); everybody under the sun who is concerned with this Bill has been brought on board. Everybody has contributed to this. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it will be a sad day today if you will accept or rule in his favour; for this matter to be removed from the Order Paper. You are a credible lawyer. You are one of the outstanding lawyers in this country and my senior in that profession. Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki is my junior but all I am saying is that he is my leader in the business of this House but the way he has approached this matter is extremely wrong. I take serious objection to this. I have been indulging him in almost all aspects but in this one, he has gone a little bit too far. I do not think I am prepared to indulge this. This Bill should go through the due process of this House.
I would like to bring this matter to a close.
The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, Standing Order No.117 tells us how Bills are introduced in this House; those who introduce them and the process. Standing Order No.145 tells us how Bills can be withdrawn from the Floor of this House. In those Standing Orders, the responsibility for introducing a Bill will lie with an individual Senator, a Chair of a Committee or the Majority or Minority Leader representing whichever side they are, depending on the sponsors of the Bill. Where a Bill is sponsored by a Committee through the Chairperson or by an individual Senator, then the responsibility of withdrawal of that Bill rests squarely with the Senator or the Chairperson of that Committee and nobody else. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am sorry I have not had the benefit to clearly hear the issues canvassed by my distinguished counterpart apart from the last explanations that he gave. If your memory serves you and me right, a Bill similar to this came to this House and was defeated, and then, the Committee embarked on remedying the situation because the former workers of the defunct local authorities and the current workers of the county government who are unionisable and pensionable, do not have proper legal cover currently. I left the Senate Business Committee (SBC) earlier with your permission before this matter was discussed. That notwithstanding, Committees of the House are only agents of plenary. All decisions must be taken by plenary. So, even if the Senate Business Committee or any other Committee for that matter makes a decision, that decision is subject to the authority of the House. That is the fundamental procedure in Parliament. I have heard Sen. Madzayo speak on the Floor and as his Leader in the House; he came and spoke to me and my deputy with a lot of agony. He feels that the Committee work that has been so painstakingly done, broadly consulted with all relevant stakeholders coming in with views, is being undermined on the Floor. It is not being given an opportunity to be prosecuted. I would encourage my distinguished counterpart, in a situation such as this, if we really want to carry a bipartisan process forward, it is a give and take. We let the matter go to First Reading and as usual it would be committed to the Committee as a Bill. Once it goes to the Committee, my counterpart has an opportunity and the right to call in everybody he wants to come and give additional views; whether it is the Attorney General – we all know that at the office of the Attorney- General, we do not know whether it is the Attorney-General or the Solicitor-General because we have many situations where the Solicitor-General is countermanding directions and orders from the Attorney-General. So, we do not even know whether it is the Attorney-General or the Solicitor General but be that as it may, whether it is the Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury, the CoG, my brother or any other person, they have an opportunity to: One, Appear before the Committee, give their views and improve the Bill and, two; The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Order, Senators! We might protract this matter for too long. At the end of the day, we will have only one way forward. The Bill has not been withdrawn. Let us first of all start by understanding that. It was, at the request of the Senate Leader of Majority, stood down. As Sen. Wetangula has correctly said, it was a decision of the Senate Business Committee. The Senate Business Committee is the only committee of the House that can make a decision like that. It is done in consultation. It sat today and considered the request by the Senate Leader of Majority that it be stood down so that there can be further consultations. Therefore, the Bill is not being withdrawn. Sen. Wetangula, the Senate Minority Leader, knows only too well that the Speaker, who also sits in the Senate Business Committee, cannot for no good reason or unilaterally overrule the decision of the Senate Business Committee. If you wish, I can refer you to Standing Order No.176 (d) which gives the Senate Business Committee the right to make decisions and issue directives and guidelines to prioritize or postpone any business of the Senate in consultation with the Speaker as the case may be. Therefore, that is a decision that has been made. What you are asking me to do now is to override unilaterally a decision of the Senate Business Committee (SBC). The point I want to make to you, with the greatest respect to Sen. Madzayo, you have to make consultations again, with the leadership of the House and at the correct time, the Bill will be on the Order Paper. You do not expect me to stand here and override the Senate Business Committee because that is a decision that was made at which both leaders of the House were present.
Sen. Wetangula, I have made a ruling on the issue. We are going to protract the issue and yet you understand very well that it The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, what are the Standing Orders for?
Order, Sen. Madzayo!
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, what I do not understand, for the first time in the history of my life in Parliament from 1993, I have never seen when a Member is on the Floor, somebody seeks to inform him and the Speaker stands to deliver a ruling. At the very least, I deserve some courtesy to be told that my time is over and it is time to make a ruling. I do not understand this. I hate arguing with the Chair. I have a lot respect, not just for the Chair but for you personally as my senior in law. However, when strange things happen, I have a duty to point them out. The microphone was not even switched off; it was still on, meaning I was still on the Floor. The very least I would expect is the Chair to tell me that it is time for his ruling. I would have known that time is up. I am not asking for too much. I have been handled strangely.
Well, I have heard you all. I have heard the Minority Leader, the Majority Leader and Sen. Madzayo. That is the position I have taken. What you need to understand is that by standing down Order No.14 on the Order Paper, I was conveying the decision of the Senate Business Committee. It was a decision that I made from where I am sitting. I expect that there will be consultations between the leadership and the chairperson of the relevant committee when a decision like this is reached. That is what I expect. It is pursuant to that, that I conveyed the decision of the Senate Business Committee faithfully. Therefore, even if you protract this matter further, it is a finished issue.
I will hear you all. However, let me put this clearly; I have made a decision which I will not rescind. What is your point of order, Sen. (Dr.) Machage?
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I respect the Chair and do not want to antagonize your ruling as the Speaker of this afternoon’s Session. It is just yesterday that we passed a list of new Members of the House Business Committee. That is hardly 20 hours ago. What has happened in the House today shows some discontent or “unco-operativeness” amongst the Members of that committee. What the Senate Majority Leader has expressed in this House is a show of no proper committal or vote of no The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I do not intend to argue with the Chair on the ruling. However, it is important that we be heard on this matter. First, it was better when you did not give any reason for stepping it down. The reason that the Majority Leader has given is even worse. That, because there is another Bill that is being developed, the work that the committee has put into this process is all in vain. These are people who are outside the legislative framework and who we have involved as stakeholders. I am very compelled to think that this precedence will haunt us in future because it is not right. As a rider on your ruling, you can indicate on when we expect this back on the Order Paper so that we can plan for it. It is not fair to the process and the work put into this progress.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the government has three arms. We are the legislators. There is the Executive and the Judiciary, in case we argue. The Legislature has done its work and very ably so. It is true that there is another Bill that had been brought to this house to deal with that aspect of pension to county government workers. However, I urge you to see that even if the Senate Business Committee was persuaded by some outside body, to kill what the Senate has developed after consulting with all these other interested bodies---. When the Senate Majority Leader quotes organs within the Executive which had been consulted by the Committee led by Sen. Madazyo, it can only mean that there must have been some other interests elsewhere. That way, I appreciate that you will not rescind your decision because as you have put it, you are merely conveying a decision by an organ of this House. However, as you go and sit in another organ, where also the Minority Leader sits, it is also important to read the mood of this House. If this Bill does not go on, it means there are other interested groups which do not want to see county government workers with a pension scheme; whatever reason they have. We urge that through you, the SBC sees the wisdom of allowing the Senate of Kenya to work, unfettered. This session called public hearing is very important. The public views can be so overwhelming that the Committee decides to withdraw and rewrite. However, a matter should not be casually brought to the House without even the substance of what was discussed out there outside the system of the legislature. Thank you for hearing me.
Sen. (Prof.) Lesan, have you sought the Floor?
Then switch it off. Sen. Madzayo, have a last go at it.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I take into consideration the plight of all those workers in the 47 county governments, all those pensioners and further taking into consideration the time spent by this very able Committee. I have always held and still hold that you are one of the most outstanding lawyers in this country. That position to me has never changed. When you sit on that Chair, we do not refer to you as any other The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to move the following Procedural Motion:- THAT, pursuant to Standing Order 100 (1), the Senate resolves that debate on a Motion not sponsored by the Majority or Minority Party or a Committee shall be limited in the following manner:- A maximum of three hours with not more than 20 minutes for the Mover, 20 minutes for the Majority Party Official Responder, 20 minutes for the Minority Party Official Responder and 15 minutes for each other Senator speaking and that 15 minutes before the time expires, the Mover shall be called upon to reply. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I do not want to speak a lot on this because it is a Procedural Motion that we pass every year on the limitation of time. There is no departure from what we have done in the past. Therefore, without much ado, I beg to move. I beg Sen. Sijeny to second this Motion.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to second.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I beg to move the following Procedural Motion:- THAT, notwithstanding the provisions of Standing Order 100 (4), the debate on any Motion for the adjournment of the Senate to a day other than the The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I beg to second
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki)
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I beg to second
What is it, Sen. (Prof.) Anyang’-Nyongo?
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I waited to speak at the end of all these procedural motions because I would like to propose that the Senate Business Committee relooks at the time devoted to these procedural motions. If you look at the time that is allocate to the debate on the President’s Address, it is three sitting days and not more than 15 minutes for each Senator speaking. However, looking at the Adjournment Motion, especially Motions of national importance where you are only The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Sen. (Prof.) Anyang'-Nyong'o, in your contribution, you seem to have made reference to the Procedural Motion that we have just passed on Limitation of Debate on Adjournment Motion. You also seem to give an impression that that also relates to an Adjournment Motion pursuant to Standing Order No.33 on matters of urgent national importance which is not limited to 30 minutes. With regard to the timing, it provides that no Senator speaking on a matter under this Standing Order shall speak for more than five minutes without the leave of the Senate. That means you can still increase that except for the Mover who may speak for 10 minutes. So, that is not the Adjournment Motion to discuss urgent issues of national importance. That is different from the Procedural Motion we have just passed. Nonetheless, your comments and points are well noted. As you pointed out, that matter might arise within the next Motion that this House will consider. Hon. Senators, there being no other interest to contribute on the matter, I will now put the question. Hon. Senators, this is not a county matter. Therefore, we will vote by acclamation.
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Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, allow me to move:- THAT, notwithstanding the provisions of standing order 249, the Senate resolves to vary the period within which the Procedure and Rules Committee should make its report on the periodic review of Standing Orders to the Senate, from six months to three months before the end of the term. Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, the reasons are obvious, noting that this year, we are constitutionally mandated to have an election on 8th August, which is slightly less than six months as provided for by Standing Order No.249 which I will read. It states that:- “At least once in every term of Parliament, not later than six months to the end of the term, the Rules and Business Committee shall review the Standing Orders and make a report to the Senate recommending the Standing Orders, if any, to be amended.” Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, noting that time limitation, we cannot have the luxury of waiting for the six months which are not available. I therefore move that we reduce this period to three months so that within those three months, we can relook at the Standing Orders and make new recommendations and amendments, so that the next House of the Senate will have a more practical Standing Orders Book. Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I do not have much to add more than that but to request Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki to second.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I thank Sen. (Dr.) Machage for bringing this Motion. I second.
Hon. Senators, I now wish to propose the question.
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, just to make a very brief contribution, I want to say that this Motion, as it is, is only sensible and logical considering the period in this calendar year we are in. This will facilitate the conduct of business of this House. I support.
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I am glad that Sen. (Dr.) Machage has moved this Motion which I was really looking forward to, to make my contribution. First, reducing the time from six to three months makes sense because we are going to elections in August. This is now February and if we say we will do it in six months, we will be more or less time barred because by the time six months are over The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Very well. Let us hear Sen. Ong’era.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity. I support this Motion. I would like to commend Sen. (Dr.) Machage for bringing it up. Indeed, it is a reasonable request, bearing in mind that our term is almost coming to an end. We would like to leave a House that is well grounded on the rule of law with clear procedures and provisions that the future generations of the Senate proceedings will follow. With those few remarks, I support.
Thank you, Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, for this opportunity. I commend Sen. (Dr.) Machage for coming up with this. It is quite timely and sensitive to the fact that this is a pioneer in all terms and conditions. We have learned through wide experience. I speak as a Member of this Committee. I would like to assure Sen. (Prof.) Anyang’-Nyong’o that we have had the privilege of benchmarking. We have gone to Canada, to the British Colombia Parliament and Australia. We have had several The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Very well. Let us have Sen. (Dr.) Machage reply.
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, as I reply, allow me to thank the Members for the sentiments they have expressed on this Motion. I take cognizance that they have been raised and promise that an avenue has been opened for Members to present their views on any of the Standing Orders they would want reviewed. To be more perfect, they are allowed to propose how they would want the reading to be. Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, without much ado, I beg to move.
Let me now put the question.
This Bill is dropped; let us proceed to the next Order.
Senate Majority Leader, proceed on this one.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I beg to move that the Kenya Roads Bill (National Assembly Bill No.26 of 2015) be read a second time. The new Constitution of August, 2010 brought a functional division between the national Government and county governments. According to the Constitution and particularly Schedule Four on the allocation of functions, the national Government retains the function of maintenance, rehabilitation and construction of national roads while county governments maintain the function of county roads.
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Sen. Sijeny you are becoming a professional seconder of Government Bills today. Proceed.
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, as the vice chairperson of the committee where this Bill was referred to, the Roads Committee, I wish to confirm that we really engaged all the stakeholders and it was really interesting that almost everyone concerned appeared. There was a lot of suspicion especially within the existing The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I rise to support this Bill. It brings out one of the key functions that have been very contentious between the national and the county governments. It is a Bill that has been well elaborated but also that has key issues that as we continue debating on it, we will have to look at. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I will be very brief and I will not speak for more than five minutes. I want to say the following. First, I agree with Sen. Elachi that we have created too many authorities and boards in the road sector. We have four boards and four authorities and I do not understand the rationale. We have two mischiefs in our management of roads. The first one is to distinguish between local and trunk roads; in other words, local and national roads. A road that goes from one county headquarters to another one is a national road. A road that meanders within the county from one market to another is a local road. So, if we had made a distinction between local roads and national roads, local roads would be under counties and national roads would be under the Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA). The third category of roads is urban roads found in, for example, Nairobi, Kisumu, Nakuru, Mombasa and Thika; those are all urban centres and there should be a criterion for classifying urban roads as opposed to market centre roads. If we only had these three categories; national trunk roads, local roads and urban roads, maneno kwisha. However, we have four boards and four authorities and roads, as Sen. Elachi said, with all kinds of classification. This is an overkill and I hope that the Committee on Roads and Transportation will look at this carefully and make it simpler. Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, secondly, we know that what has bedeviled Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA) and Kenya Rural Roads Authority (KeRRA) is the tendering for constructing roads. Bodies are established to control tenders for roads and to get kickbacks and therefore hand over to us substandard roads. This also happens in counties. If you look at county budgets for the so-called development, you will see that it goes largely to roads infrastructure. All kinds of contractors have emerged, let loose in the counties and county officers are all kinds of relations with the contractors. If you go to county assemblies, you will find that all kinds of MCAs are themselves contractors using all kinds of companies to tender for roads in the counties. We know that the Constitution does not allow conflict of interest. After they have got the contracts, they have to give kickbacks to county officials. Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, we have got poor roads in the counties yet a lot of money has been used. This is what the law should cure. What are we going to do to make sure that roads built in counties are standard roads? Are there some standards in this law that says that when you build a local road or a road connecting one city to the other, these are the standards for constructing the road? The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate
Let me now call upon the Mover to reply.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I take this opportunity to thank Sen. Sijeny for secoding the Bill. I also thank Sen. Elachi and Sen. (Prof.) Anyang’-Nyong’o for supporting the Bill. I have listened to input from the three contributors. They have made very valid points. I hope the Committee on Roads and Transportation will take on board some of those concerns so that by the time the Bill comes for the Committee stage and final Third Reading, those concerns are addressed. Mr. Temporary Speaker, Sir, I do not want to take more time. I beg to move. On the basis of Standing Order No.54(3), I beg that you defer the putting of the question to another day, as you may determine.
It is so granted. The putting of the question on the Bill is deferred to such a date as it will appear on the Order Paper.
Hon. Senators, it now 6.30 p.m., time to adjourn the Senate. The Senate stands adjourned until tomorrow, Thursday, 16th February, 2017 at 2.30 p.m. The Senate rose at 6.30 p.m. The electronic version of the Senate Hansard Report is for information purposes only. A certified version of this Report can be obtained from the Hansard Editor, Senate