Hon. Senators, I wish to acknowledge the presence in the Speaker’s Gallery this afternoon of vising students and lecturers from Tangaza University College in Nairobi County. On behalf of the Senate and on my own behalf, I welcome them to the Senate and wish them well for the remainder of their stay. I thank you.
Sen. Poghisio, please, proceed.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I want to join you in welcoming the delegation from Tangaza University College. I believe it is affiliated with the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). So, I want to say to you, karibu to the Senate. It is important that we have a working relationship with academic institutions in this country and for them to understand what we do in the Senate. I know that a number of us in the Senate are students in various universities. So, in a way, we want to associate with your desire to be here. You can take home the fact that we appreciate you. Thank you.
Sen. Cherargei, you have the Floor.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I also want to join you in welcoming the delegation from Tangaza University College. I hope they will learn a lot from the Senate. I know the Senate concept is somehow new to Kenyans because most of them have just been reading about it. Now, it is a reality. 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. Members, please switch to the Supplementary Order Paper which has been circulated to you. This is a Petition by Mr. Taratisio Ireri Kawe on the enactment of a single legislation on the protection and sustainable management of water resources, water sources and riparian zones in Kenya. Hon. Senators, pursuant to Standing Orders Nos.221 and 224(2)(b), I hereby report to the Senate that a Petition has been submitted through the Clerk by Mr. Taratisio Ireri Kawe; a resident of Embu County. As you are aware, Article 119(1) of the Constitution says:- “Every person has a right to petition Parliament to consider any matter within its authority, including to enact, amend or repeal any legislation.” The salient issues raised in the said Petition are as follows:- (a) That despite the existing laws in place, wetlands in Kenya have been receding at an alarming rate primarily as a result of uncontrolled human encroachment and exploitation over the years. (b) If the current activities relating to the environmental degradation and water sources invasion are not curtailed, most of the Kenyan territory will be semi-arid in the next 10 years and eventually a desert. (c) Presently, the law on the conservation and protection of water resources and riparian zones is scattered in many different pieces of legislation, which has presented a challenge in terms of overlapping and conflicting mandates and a lack of coordination in enforcement. Consequently, the petitioner prays that the Senate initiates the enactment of a single legislation consolidating the various laws on the protection and sustainable management of water resources and riparian zones in Kenya, including putting in place a strong centralised agency with sufficient powers to enforce compliance with the said law. Hon. Senators, pursuant to standing Order No.225, I shall now allow comments, observations or clarifications in relation to the Petition for not more than 30 minutes.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, thank you for giving me the opportunity to ventilate a little bit on the petition before us. Even without looking at the details of the petition, I am a Professor of Soil and Water Conservation and the issue of water resources 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.
Honourable Senators, pursuant to Standing Order No.226(1), the petition stands committed to the standing Committee on Lands, Environment and Natural Resources. In terms of Standing Order No.226(2), the Committee is 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 thank you. Next Order!
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to give notice of the following Motion: THAT, ACKNOWLEDGING that the meeting between His Excellency, the President, Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta and the distinguished Leader of the NASA Coalition, the Rt. hon. Raila Odinga on Friday, 9th March, 2018, putting aside political differences through building bridges marked an important and historic moment for the country; 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.
Honourable Senators, for the convenience of the Senate, I direct that we proceed to Order No.10 but we will come back to other Orders later on.
On a point of order
What is your point of order?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I plead with you. Now that we are on the Notices of Motions and there is only one other, allow me to give my notice of Motion and then we go by the ruling that you have made.
Okay, proceed, honourable Senator. 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 thank you for your indulgence. I beg to give notice of the following Motion: THAT, WHEREAS Kenya’s disaster profile is dominated by droughts, fire, floods, terrorism, diseases and epidemics that disrupt livelihoods, destroy infrastructure, divert planned use of resources, interrupt economic activities and retard development; FURTHER WHEREAS the government, through its various agencies, is ultimately responsible for disaster reduction, preparedness and management; COGNIZANT of the fact that government agencies involved in disaster management are usually overwhelmed when called upon to provide response services during disasters and emergencies; AWARE that the Kenya Red Cross Society Act, Cap 256 of the Laws of Kenya, establishes the Kenya Red Cross Society, a sole national Red Cross Society in Kenya, as a voluntary aid society; RECOGNIZING, the efforts of the Kenya Red Cross Society to provide first-line disaster response services in incidences of disasters and other emergencies across the country; OBSERVING, the huge financial resources required to finance disaster reduction, preparedness and other emergency services; NOTING that one of the sources of the Kenya Red Cross Society in financing its operations is through accepting unrestricted contributions and assistance, in any form, from individuals, public authorities and private bodies; APPRECIATING, the efforts made by the prudent management of funds by the Kenya Red Cross Society; FURTHER AWARE that emergency fund is a substantial proportionate Vote Head in both the national and county government budgets; CONCERNED, that the Kenya Red Cross Society has not been allocated a budget from the national and county governments despite the huge contribution in disaster and emergency response across the country; NOW THEREFORE, the Senate urges the national and county governments to explore collaborative mechanisms for the Kenya Red Cross Society to support and implement a paradigm shift from post disaster response to risk reduction by developing and implementing a national disaster risk financing strategy across all sectors and incorporate it into the national and county development planning and financing processes. Thank you. 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, before we move to the next order, I would like to acknowledge the presence in the Speaker’s Gallery this afternoon of visiting Members of the County Assembly of Makueni. I request each Member of the delegation to stand when called out so that they may be acknowledged in the Senate tradition. They are:- (a) Hon. Kimongo Jonathan Muunda - The Majority Whip (b) Hon. Mueni Joseph Muthini - The Deputy Minority Whip (c) Hon. Joseph Kahindu Kivinda - The Minority Whip On behalf of the Senate and on my own behalf, I welcome you to the Senate and wish you well for the remainder of your stay. VISITING DELEGATION OF LIBRARY STAFF FROM VIHIGA COUNTY ASSEMBLY I would also like to acknowledge the presence in the Speaker’s Gallery this afternoon of visiting library staff from Vihiga County Assembly. In our usual tradition of receiving and welcoming visitors to Parliament, I extend a warm welcome to them. On behalf of the Senate and on my own behalf, I wish them a fruitful visit. VISITING DELEGATION FROM TIRENI BOYS HIGH SCHOOL, NANDI COUNTY I would also like to acknowledge the presence in the Public Gallery this afternoon of visiting students and teachers from Tireni Boys High School from Nandi County. In our usual tradition of receiving and welcoming visitors to Parliament, I extend a warm welcome to them. On behalf of the Senate and on my own behalf, I wish them a fruitful visit. I thank you. We may now proceed.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I beg to move the following Motion: THAT, acknowledging that the meeting between His Excellency, the President, the Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta and His Excellency Raila Odinga on Friday, 9th March, 2018, putting aside political differences 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.
No, a hug may be misunderstood.
In the other House, they were saying that people were getting pictures of all sorts. So, someone may take that picture and use it for a different reason. If we do not do that, our people may not understand what this process is all about. With those remarks, Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to move and I ask the Senate Majority Leader to second. Thank you.
Thank you Mr. Speaker, Sir. First, I start by congratulating the Mover of the Motion. I have never shied away from saying that he is part of the people in the legal profession who inspired me to study law. He is a Senior Counsel and a senior member in the political arena, because when I was born, Sen. Orengo was already a Member of Parliament. I, therefore, have utmost respect for the work he has done over the years and the consistency that he has shown in his political career. I am very proud and honoured to be here seconding his Motion, which is a very important one. Mr. Speaker, Sir, this Motion comes at a time when many Kenyans never believed that it was possible to bridge the gap that was dividing us. In my honest opinion, the meeting between the President and the Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga, the former Prime Minister, was not just a meeting that was made possible by men. It was made possible by inspiration from God. This is because this country needed a turnaround from the ways of the past. The Bible says that you must find direction, your way and your first love. It is time and moment in this country that the people of Kenya must go back to their first love. That love that put Tom Mboya in the same boat with Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and Mzee Oginga Odinga and joined later by people like Daniel arap Moi and Ronald Ngala etcetera. That spirit that pushed this country to fight for justice, equality and independence must come back and reign in this country. It is a pity that, particularly after the 2007/2008 post election violence, we thought we had learnt our lesson - and we did. At least, we got ourselves a new Constitution. We believed that we would solve the problem by providing that the President of the Republic of Kenya must gain 50 per cent plus one vote in an election. It reached a stage where the divide was going to be so strong. Most of us were theorising that the higher the percentage you need to win the presidency, the easier it is to unite the country. Most of us never contemplated that it would be easy to divide a country into two. The former Prime Minister, who was a fierce competitor against the current President and who has participated in many elections, has made a very bold step of making a decision to sit with the President and decide we need to have a stable nation and a conversation that has no conditions. It is very disheartening when you hear the kind of conversations that we have in the country. These are conversations that are not focused 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.
The Floor is now open. Proceed, Sen. Wetangula.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I can see how you have captured the mood with that exuberant enthusiasm.
I rise to support the Motion. In his book Kusadikika, Shaaban Bin Robert wrote and I quote: “ Mara nyingi kila nchi huficha mashujaa wake mpaka janga kuu litokee” Mr. Speaker, Sir, this country has been on the brink many times. In 1997---
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, Sir.
What is your point of order?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I rise under Standing Order No.100. Given the great interest in this Motion, will I be in order to propose that we limit the debate per contributor to five minutes?
I will give the Senate Minority Leader ten minutes and the rest of the Members five minutes each.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. In 1997 when the country was on the brink of disaster, the then President Daniel Arap Moi conceded to the Inter-Parties Parliamentary Group (IPPG) in Parliament. On the night the Bill to alter the Constitution and several other laws was brought to the House, he came to the House at midnight, voted for the Bill and the temperature in the country went down drastically before we went to election. We were in that House with the distinguished Sen. James Orengo and Sen. Poghisio. Mr. Speaker, Sir, this country has gone through trying moments. We have had elections nullifications, repeat elections, boycotted elections, demonstrations, violence, teargas, bullets, deaths, injuries, arrests, prosecutions and incarcerations, et cetera . However, on Friday last week, an important event which has the effect of turning around 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 thank you. Indeed, these are very interesting times. No one would have expected what we are witnessing in our country to happen so fast, yet so importantly. We totally support this process. Secondly, I think we should honour both leaders; the President of our country and the Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga. They should be respected for the decision that they took and particularly, the Rt. Hon. Odinga. This is because when you have lost an election – whether you think you lost fairly or unfairly – it is not very easy to come to terms with that and still be at the negotiation table for the sake of the nation. For your information, I support one Sen. Orengo. Our senior said that Hon. Raila Odinga is not just your ordinary politician. He stood for presidential elections in 1997. In 2002, he supported somebody else in a very critical way. He stood in 2007, 2013 and 2017. This is not somebody we cannot hold a candle up for. So, I take this opportunity to applaud the two leaders. Thirdly, it is a great thing for the country to come together. In Psalms 133, the Bible says: “How wonderful, how precious it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.” 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 rise to add my voice and appreciation in the manner in which the Heavenly Father has guided the two statesmen to make a very profound and extremely important decision that will guide this nation to prosperity. 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.
Proceed, Sen. (Rev.) Waqo.
Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, Sir---
Order, Sen. Wako! It is Sen. (Rev.) Waqo Naomi Jillo –Waqo with a “q.”
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I rise to add my voice on this. It seems as if it is a day for each one of us to quote the Bible. So, I start with Mathew 19:26 where we say everything is possible with God our maker. I congratulate our President and also the Retired Prime Minister for the special gift they have given to us, Kenyans. It is a gift because Easter is approaching and this is an Easter gift because we will celebrate Easter as one nation. At Christmas, we were all divided, but now we are a united nation. Therefore, I congratulate our President for inviting the Retired Prime Minister to reason together. We all know very well the pain that we have gone through as a nation. Many people have lost their lives and businesses, and many more are still counting losses. However, God in His own way has brought our leaders together so that we can have 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.
Order, Members. I just wish to disrupt debate briefly to make a brief communication.
Asante sana, Bw. Spika, kwa kunipa nafasi hii. Kwanza, namshukuru mwenzangu, Seneta wa Kaunti ya Siaya, kwa kuleta Mswada huu kujadiliwa katika Jumba hili. Pili, nawashukuru wote waliozungumza, husan ndugu yangu, Sen. Wetangula, kwa yale mambo mazuri aliyozungumza juu yangu. Bw. Spika, kama kuna mtu aliye na furaha kwa mwenendo uliochukuliwa na hawa viogozi wawili, ni mimi. Miezi michache iliyopita –nafikiri miezi mitatu au mine - nilimwita Sen. Wako na Sen. (Prof.) Ongeri na nikawaambia kwamba vile nchi inavyokwenda, itakuwa vibaya kama sisi, wazee na viongozi, hatutajishughulisha ili kuleta hawa viongozi pamoja. Hata hivyo, kwa bahati mbaya, tulipokuwa tukijaribu kutafuta wale ambao tungeweza kufanya kazi nao pamoja, wengine walitoa hiyo siri. Kwa hivyo, tuliona ya kwamba hatungeweza kuendelea na jambo hilo. Ilikuwa kisa kama vile Wazungu wanavyosema, “ letting the cat out of the bag.” 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.
Proceed, Sen. Wambua.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me the Floor. I stand in support of this Motion. The push for unity in this Nation does not have to be limited to the top leadership of this country. All of us have a role to play in uniting our Nation. The handshake that we saw on Friday should now be witnessed at all levels of leadership in all cities, towns and villages in this nation. Most important is the role that we, as leaders in the Senate, will play in pushing forward the unity agenda for our nation. Mr. Speaker, Sir, on matters of building bridges, the Senator of Kitui County has done and continues to do his part. It will be remembered that on the 16th of December, last year, when I organised the first ever goat auction in Kitui County, we had representatives from across the political divide in this House. There were Senators who came and participated in that event, which you graced and presided over. Two weeks ago, I addressed the County Assembly of Kitui in the company of Senators and Members of Parliament from across the political divide. Last Sunday, I was 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 wish to support this important Motion. By the two leaders, His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta and Hon. Raila Odinga, coming together there is no doubt that the people behind them will follow suit. Leaders lead the way. Given that the two leaders have shown us the route of unity, I believe that is where the country is headed. Our country has been in a very unpalatable and worrying situation. Let us all admit that the leadership, including all of us, have been responsible for dividing the people of Kenya along ethnic entities. I know that more is coming, but the appearance of the two leaders talking as brothers; each of them referring to the other as a brother, sent very positive thinking in this country. The importance and necessity of unity to a home, a people and a country need not be overemphasised. It is an essential thing like the food we eat. This country has been expending a lot of energy for the last two years, when politics has been heightened, on destructive things that divide us. We would rather have used the same energy to look into why we are leaders in this nation. Leaders should worry more about the rising cost of living of our people and how tomorrow will be. Therefore, the action by the two leaders should have the support of all of us. Mr. Speaker, Sir, it has not been very easy for some of us who happen to have friends across the political divide. For example, Sen. Orengo was my classmate in Alliance High School, but if for some reason I was captured with him and the photo appeared on The Daily Nation newspaper, the message that would be sent is I am cohabiting with NASA. We have a country with many religions. When did you see a Catholic not chatting with an Anglican? This is the way we should live when we are politicians from different divides. However, we have brought it to the extent where it has not been easy. 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, Sen. (Eng.) Maina! Your time is up. Sen. Omogeni Erick Okong’o.
Mr. Speaker, Sir I rise to support the Motion.
Let us consult in low tones.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I begin by making reference to the quotation by Nelson Mandela in May 1994, when he was assuming the presidency of South Africa. Mandela said:- “Out of the experience of an extraordinary human disaster that lasted too long, must be born a society of which all humanity will be proud.” With that quotation Nelson Mandela picked Fredrik Willem de Klerk, who was the President from the regime that had presided over apartheid and kept Mandela in jail for 27 years. Nelson Mandela planted a seed in South Africa of togetherness, forgiveness and tolerance that lasted for a long time in South Africa. The gesture we saw last week from His Excellency Raila Amollo Odinga and His Excellency President Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta is something that gives this country an opportunity to open a new page of togetherness. It is a page where our ethnicity should not divide us and we should do away with politics of toxic nature, abuse and looking at each other through our ethnic lenses. Mr. Speaker, Sir, we should all applaud the two leaders and agree that from now henceforth we should aspire to build a nation where future generations will be proud of. Some of us who are serving our first term in this House experienced how our ethnic divide had become wide. When we were participating in choosing our Chairpersons and Vice Chairpersons in our Committees we could see that this country had reached a level that was alarming in terms of our ethnic affiliations. It is my true and sincere hope that what this country went through last week will give us an opportunity to embrace the preamble in our Constitution, 2010. It says in part:- “We the people of Kenya, proud of our ethnic, cultural and religious diversity; and determined to live in peace and unity as one indivisible sovereign nation, adopt, enact and give this Constitution to ourselves and to our future generations.” Mr. Speaker Sir, we will not live the true spirit of this Constitution if we continue embracing politics that puts our ethnicity ahead of everything. I hope from now henceforth, we will see more unity in this House; we will seize the opportunity to relook 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.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir. I rise to support the Motion on unity of purpose between His Excellency the President, Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta and the former Prime Minister, Rt. hon. Raila Odinga. I can authoritatively comment about these two great gentlemen because I served as a Member of the National Assembly, courtesy of Rt. hon. Raila Odinga who nominated me. Today, I am serving as hon. Senator because of his Excellency the President, Hon. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta who nominated me. On a light note, our people out there, are saying Uhuru Tibim and Raila Tialala just to show the kind of spirit that is engulfing the country. Today morning on InooroFM, I was very glad to hear people from Homa Bay County saying they cannot wait to see President Uhuru and Rt. hon. Raila Odinga touring their county to unite them and speak to them. Indeed, we are very excited to hear there is a programme by the two gentlemen to tour the country and unite it. It reminds me of the time when Raila Odinga and his Excellency Mwai Kibaki went to Nyeri in 2002. The Rt. hon. Raila Odinga was referred to as Njamba; meaning a hero in Kikuyu language. Mr. Speaker, Sir, let us agree that this country was deeply divided. Those of us who were foot soldiers of the political divide that we find ourselves in, could not even tolerate one another on television. It looked like we were going to war; we were not reasoning. Any time you said anything, somebody would jump on you. Reason had taken a back seat because of the deep divisions and suspicions. Unity must have purpose because if we just unite for the sake of it, then people may lose direction. In fact, I was very happy to see the National Super Alliance (NASA) other co-principals saying that they too would like to meet his Excellency the President, Hon. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta. My response to them is: “Welcome, we all need everybody on board in this process of uniting Kenya.” We must respect the fact that the former Prime Minister, Rt. hon. Raila Odinga provided leadership by showing the way that the whole country has followed. We must ask ourselves this question: For how long are we going to play our politics based on ethnic mobilisation? If we do so, it means that if we vote for a certain candidate, we are voting for their tribe and, therefore, against another tribe. This is very sad. Investors say this country is good and has a future. However, they cannot be sitting back to watch every five years as we grapple with the outcome of elections. If we have to move forward, let us accept that the structure of the Executive does not allow for full inclusion of the face of Kenya. That is the truth. Going forward, for purposes of unity, we may need to expand the structure of the Executive to create the position of the Chief Cabinet Secretary and two deputies so that competing coalitions can have an opportunity to serve in the Government and present their manifesto to Kenyans. If we do not stand together as a country and slay the dragon of corruption, it does not matter who captures the State through democratic means because Kenyans will not get their rightful share and birth right. For sure, we need to address tribalism and corruption in this country. Tribalism has robbed us of our collective sense of purpose while corruption has stolen our present and our future. It is incumbent upon us, as 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.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me the opportunity to support this important Motion. As true Christian, I thank God, He exists. For somebody like me, people will ask: What kind of politics will you be doing?
This is because for the last two decades, I have been following Hon. Raila Odinga, the man that I respect and believe that he means well for the country. When I go to sleep and wake up, I want to know how he is doing. For the last two decades, the politics in this country have not been well. God has given us a great country called Kenyan. It has a lot of potential. So, what happened on Friday, 9th February, 2018, I want to praise God for it.
I was not consulted, neither was I told anything. However, in the evening, I saw two statesmen shaking hands. Believe me, peace flowed in the entire nation, especially in the City of Kisumu. If you were in Kisumu, you could have seen it was as though the heavens were wide open and Jesus Christ jumped into Kisumu.
Everyone was happy. For the last two decades, we lost people because of political differences. If God exists and allows these two statesmen to continue to champion peace in this country, who am I to stand in their way? I want to urge all the other politicians, please, this is not the time to lament that you should have been included. This is the time that we need to stand as leaders in Kenya and support this move of the two statesmen. We do not want any other politician, either from NASA or Jubilee party to interfere. These two gentlemen, President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Rt. hon. Raila Odinga, came as statesmen. If they can bring peace, we need to support them. We need the peace that surpasses all understandings as the Bible says. If they can bring it to Kenya, we need to say “amen.” In Kisumu today, we can smile. My brothers and sisters from the other side of the political divide, are doing business in Kisumu. We are looking forward to receiving the two statesmen, his Excellency the President, Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta and the Rt. hon. Raila Odinga. To me, history will be repeating itself. In 2013, immediately after the Supreme Court ruling, I was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Nyando Constituency. It was in my constituency that the two leaders met and shook hands for the first time after 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. Speaker, Sir, thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to support this Motion. If you look around, you will realise that even the demeanor of this House has changed because it never used to be like this last week. Because of the handshake, we are all sitting together in this House. So, I appreciate the fact that it has brought the peace that we wanted. William Wilberforce is the man credited with abolishing slavery and slave trade through legislation because he was a Member of Parliament in the House of Commons. It took him nearly 30 years and at the end of it, a Motion was passed and slavery was abolished. He said that he was on a mission to do two things; to abolish slavery and slave trade and reformation of manners. Even with the newfound peace, we still need to reform our manners and the way we do things. During every election cycle in this country, we behave in such a way that is inconsistent with the words of our national anthem. Our national anthem is sung many times and there is no reason for us to doubt that God can answer prayers. Our national anthem goes like this:- “Ee Mungu nguvu yetu Ilete baraka kwetu Haki iwe ngao na mlinzi Natukae na udugu amani na uhuru Raha tupate na ustawi” We have been singing it all along. Why would we doubt that one day God will answer us? That answer came. So, we thank God for enabling the two great leaders to have that handshake. The two leaders could have met upstairs at Harambee House, gotten into a car and disappeared but they did not do that. Instead they came out in the open. They shook hands and it was broadcasted everywhere in the world. That public show is the one that we celebrate today. So, I join the whole nation in thanking His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Rt. Hon---
Sen. (Prof.) Kamar, what is your intervention?
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am standing on a point of order according to our Standing Order No.100 on limitation of time. I can see a lot of blinks which means many of us what to contribute. I request that you limit the debate to two minutes.
I will allow each to have three minutes. Sen. Poghisio, you may conclude
Mr. Speaker, Sir, will I have three minutes?
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 concluding.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I thank the two leaders for showing the way. For the rest of us, whatever comes our way, it is a moment to sacrifice. It is a moment for us to get together even if it means getting together to amend our Constitution for our sake or if it means getting together to legislate so that we make this country great again. We could not move. We were all chocked and we needed fresh air so that we begin to do business, travel and shake hands. I am happy that our country is now open. In fact we saw the shilling reacting to that. We also have tourism and other sectors already responding. I urge us to honour the two great sons of Kenya and respect them. If you cannot respect them, then you need to honour them. Let us give them the moment that they deserve to lead this country. There are no winners or losers. You cannot be a loser in a place that will win. You cannot be a loser when the overall result is victory. With all that, I thank you.
Asante Bw. Spika kwa kunipa nafasi. Siku ya Ijumaa ni siku muhimu sana haswa kwa jamii ya Waislamu lakini viongozi hao wawili sio Waislamu. Cha kushangaza ni kuwa walikutana siku ya Ijumaa na Mwenyezi Mungu aliibariki siku hiyo. Nachukua nafasi hii vilevile kuwapa kongole kwa ujasiri wao kukutana licha ya kuwa walikuwa wapinzani. Kuna baadhi ya Wakenya waliopoteza maisha yao kutokana na vita. Nina furaha kwamba Kiongozi wa Wachache katika Seneti alieongea na sikuona mtu yeyote upande ule mwingine akitoa hoja ya nidhani na hiyo si kawaida. Natumai kuanzia leo hoja za nidhamu hazitakuepo. Jambo la muhimu ni kwamba sote twahitaji amani katika nchi ya Kenya. Bibilia pia inatuhimiza kupenda jirani zetu kama tunavyopenda nafsi zetu. Hiyo ni amri ya Mwenyezi Mungu. Jukumu letu sisi kama Wakenya ni kuona kwamba Kenya yetu inaendelea mbele kimaendeleo na kiuhusiano.
Wanasema kwamba palipo na wazee, hapaharibiki neno. Mheshimiwa Uhuru Kenyatta na Mhemshimiwa Raila Odinga hatimaye walikutana. Kiongozi wa muungano wa wafanyakazi Bw. Francis Atwoli aliwaambia kuwa haina haja kutuambia siku, saa na wapi. Alitaka wakutane kisiri ama kiwazi lakini waongee peke yao na nchi hii itakuwa na amani. Msemo huo umetokea kuwa kweli. Nawapongeza watu wa dini, mawakili na watu wote katika nchi ya Kenya kwa kuhimiza viongozi hao wawili kukutana.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Asante sana, Sen. Madzayo.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, thank you for giving me time to add my voice to this important Motion. I support the coming together of the two great leaders. This is an idea which needs to be supported by every citizen of this country and not just by the arms of Government and leaders. 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.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to contribute to this Motion. There could not have been a better time to bring this Motion. The meeting between President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga is commendable and this should have come much earlier than now. The economy of Kenya is in disarray because of the disagreements that were there before the general elections. Therefore, this unity between the two leaders is going to improve our economic prosperity. Kenya can be a first world like countries in Europe and the United States of America (USA) and all we need is peace in this country. If we had uninterrupted peace for ten years, this country would becomea first world and would cease begging other first world countries. Our strength in Kenya today can only be peace. If we have prolonged peace then we can say Kenya is going to develop. We need selfless leaders like we have today. Leaders like President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga who would sit one morning and agree that for purposes of building and developing this country, they agree to meet to unite Kenyans. Selfishness has brought a lot of problems in this country and it has brought the economy of the country down. We need to have a big economy in Kenya because we want our children to have good education and live good lives. That cannot happen without unity of common purpose. We have seen countries like Yugoslavia---
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for the opportunity to add my voice to this great act of patriotism by His Excellency President Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta and the Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga. The great act of leadership is what happens after your absence. If everything you have done and worked for all your life dies with you, then you become a failure. Further, leadership is measured by what happens when you die. It is not about your investments in buildings or your investment in divisive politics, but what people will remember you with. As I stand here to represent the great people of Narok County, I know that they will remember these two gentlemen for having set aside their own selfish interests to come together to support the unity of this great nation. I am always saddened that when you become a leader, you tend to forget that you are supposed to be there as a servant. What I saw last Friday is a true act of leadership that inspires young generations. This is leadership that makes every young Kenyan have a promise for tomorrow. What makes a great country is when you have a government that not only invests in making 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.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for the opportunity to also add my voice to this great debate which is happening here in this Senate where there has been so much division and now we see oneness – one Senate, one people with one hope for our country. I also want to take this opportunity and take a cue from my colleagues in congratulating the two great leaders, His Excellency, President Uhuru Kenyatta and the former Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga. They showed us that leadership is thinking about the people you lead and not about self-interest. That is a big lesson that we can learn from the two leaders. I speak on behalf of the women and children of this country who for the past few years or months have felt insecure. When there is no peace in the country, the people who suffer most are the vulnerable – the women and children. While we are especially happy that our leaders have shown the way, what we have to do as leaders is not always to be “you; you”. We know what we should do for our people. We know we need peace. It should not be the two leaders who should be deciding that now there is peace and tomorrow there is no peace. As leaders, we have a responsibility of keeping that leadership and it is our utterances which will promote peace in this country. We need to be one nation because God wanted us to be one nation and that is why he put all of us here in Kenya. The biggest appreciation that we can give to the two great leaders is to make a nation from now on; not a nation of Kenya today and a nation of this and that tomorrow. It is possible and we can do it for we owe it to our children and our country. We have a nation to continue building just like our forefathers left it. I support unreservedly and I support to work with all of us together for the goodness---
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): So far so good. Put your thoughts together for I can see that the levels of interest are still extremely high. We will proceed for a while then see what we can do. Could we hear from Sen. (Prof.) Kamar?
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): Order Sen. Wako. The Chair knows what he is doing. Just watch and you will see what will happen. Could we hear from Sen. (Prof.) Kamar?
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Order! Sen. Wako, sit down. Sen. (Prof.) Kamar, you have the Floor.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for that protection. I thought that we have had the handshake.
) Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I rise to support this Motion and to thank Sen. Orengo for moving it because this is a very important moment in our nation. I also congratulate His Excellency the President and the Rt. Hon. former Prime Minister for coming together. We have learnt our lessons in the last few days and we now know that divided we fall. I say that because that division even came into this House and we fell flat down. I was very impressed to see Sen. Dullo having a hearty chat with the Senate Minority Leader a few minutes ago. I told myself that things have changed. What has happened has taught us some lessons and one of the lessons arises from the reaction of the people to what has happened between the leaders. That has shown us that Kenyans are bound by God and we thank Him for that. We must obey the unity of purpose that founded this nation. I would like to urge Senators that arising from this lesson, we should now forge our future, especially in the next four-and-half years, in unity because there is a lot that we must do together. I know that we fell apart and were not able to do a number of things in this House. There is a lot that requires the unity of Senators. We have said that we want to reform the Senate, we want the Senate to be the eye of the people and do oversight that is required but we cannot do all that unless we are united. I encourage Senators to be united like our leaders, move forward and make this country proud. With those remarks, I support.
Thank you Mr. Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity. As someone who has been involved in a number of these crises since 1991, I want to congratulate His Excellency the President of Kenya, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta and His Excellency Raila Amollo Odinga for the initiative they have taken to move this country forward. I am paying tribute to the two because in the joint statement that they made, they touched on the problems that have confronted Kenya, time and again, and they are problems that all of us have gone through. We had them in 1991-1992, then 1997 where the Inter-Parties Parliamentary Group(IPPG) was formed and I had the privilege of drafting the biggest legislation, the Statute Law (Miscellaneous Amendments) Act, 1997, which touched on 67 different legislations. The then Speaker said that he was allowing it because of the special circumstances of that time. 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.
Bw. Naibu Spika, nimesimama kuunga mkono Hoja ya Sen. Orengo na kuwapongeza viongozi wetu,vinara wawili; Mhe. Rais Uhuru Kenyatta na Mhe. Raila Amollo Odinga. Viongozi hawa walikuwa mahasimu wajadi lakini juzi, siku tukufu ya Ijumaa, walikuja pamoja, wakakumbatiana, wakapeana mikono na wakashusha hali mbaya ya siasa ambayo iliyokuwepo katika nchi yetu ya Kenya. Ilhali, yapo mengi ambayo bado yana takikana kufanywa kwa sababu ukabila, ufisadina mambo mengi ambayo waliyazungumzia bado yako. Ni lazima tushirikiane kama Bunge la Seneti na nchi kwa jumla kuhakikisha kwamba yametatuliwa. Jambo moja ambalo ningependa kuzungumzia ni kwamba hatuna kitu cha kutuunganisha pamoja sisi kama Wakenya kwa sababu kila mtu akitoka katika Bunge hili la Seneti, ana kwenda katika kabila lake. Zamani, tulikuwapo na redio ya kitaifa, idhaa ya taifa; Sauti ya Kenya, lakini sasa, kila mtu anaskiza redio ya kabila lake. Hiyo ni mbaya kwa nchi hii kwa sababu hatuna kitu ambacho kina tuunganisha kama Wakenya. Kuna wakati hayati Mwalimu Nyerere alizungumzia kabila akasema kwamba katika Karne ya 21, hakuna mtu anatakikana kupanda basi ya kabila. Ukabila ulikwisha kwa sababu watu wa Ulaya walijiunga pamoja na kuwa European Union. Sisi tumejiunga pamoja kama East African Community, lakini bado tunarejea katika makabila yetu ili kuwahujumu wengine. Kwa hivyo, tutafute kitu ambacho kitatuunganisha pamoja kama Wakenya. Hii itakuwa ni lugha ya Kiswahili ambayo tunaitumia kama lugha ya taifa. Kwa sababu kama hatuna kitu cha kutujumuisha pamoja kama Wakenya, yale yote yanayofanywa hapa yatakuwa ni ya bure. Yaliyofanyika mwaka wa 1997, 2007 na 2017 yanaweza kufanyika tena kama hatutakuwa na mambo ya kudumu ya kuondoa ukabila. Kwa hivyo, ni lazima tulete taasisi ambazo zitahakikisha kwamba kuna usawa, hakuna ukabila na zitaondoa ufisadi ili kuhakikisha kwamba nchi yetu ya Kenya inasonga mbele. Kwa hayo mengi, Bwana Naibu Spika, naunga mkono Hoja ya Seneta Orengo. Asante.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Proceed, Sen. Kinyua. 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.
Asante sana, Bw. Naibu Spika. Nataka kuunga mkono Hoja hii. Kwa kweli, hakuchi, hakuchi, hatimaye kumekucha. Nasema hivi kwa sababu hawa viongozi wawili tayari wamesalimiana na wakasema kwamba Kenya ni moja na msukumo wa mambo ambayo yametuunganisha hayawezi yakatenganishwa. Kwa hivyo, sisi kama viongozi hapa Seneti, tunawaunga mkono na kusema kwamba lile walilofanya ni jambo la umuhimu sana. La kufanya sasa ni kuhakikisha tuko na taasisi muhimu; na zile tulizo nazo, tuzitilie nguvu. Tukifanya hivi, tutahakikisha kwamba yale mambo yaliyozungumzwa yasiwe tu maneno makavu, bali yawe mambo yatakayo kuwa vizuri katika Katiba yetu. Vile vile, hatutaki iwe katika Katiba yetu peke yake, bali pia iwe katika mioyo na mawazo ya Wakenya. Bwana Naibu Spika, baada ya wale viongozi wawili kusalimiana siku ya Ijumaa, madaktari wengi kutoka sehemu nyingi za Kenya wameniambia kwamba wagonjwa waliokuwa wakitembelea zahanati zao wamepungua. Hii ni kwa sababu kulikuwa na hali ya taharuki na sintofahamu katika nchi yetu. Lakini sasa, baada ya hawa viongozi wawili kusalimiana, inaonekana kuwa umoja na undugu umeimarika katika nchi yetu ya Kenya. Langu ni kusema kwamba ikiwa hali hii itaweza kuendelea hivyo mpaka mwaka wa 2022 na 2027, basi itakuwa vizuri kwa Wakenya wote. Lakini inafaa ijulikane vizuri kwamba lile jambo linalotuogofia lisiwe tu ni siasa, bali ionekane ni siasa na iendelee kuwekwa katika taasisi zetu ambazo zitaaminika sasa na hata baadaye. Asante sana, Bwana Naibu Spika.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Thank you; that is good use of time. Proceed, Sen. Shiyonga.
Thank you very much, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the Motion. I commend His Excellency the President, Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta and His Excellency the Rt. hon. Raila Odinga for rising up to the occasion when Kenya really needed them most. This is to demonstrate that, indeed, they are statesmen. As Senators, we must take this challenge and, indeed, propel what legacy they have brought to us. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, a country needs peace and, indeed, Kenya now has peace. It is with this peace that our economy is going to rise above where it was. We need to embrace the peace that we have and all sectors that have been mandated with bringing peace in this country. The hatred that had taken root in this country was far beyond. Indeed, when I come to this House and stand to see that we have been unified by these two statesmen with their statements, words and handshake, I feel very relieved as one of the legislatures in this House. We need to applaud these two men. We also need to pull together and it is our duty to support this through various organs. We need to embrace this peace so that the Ministries, the Legislature, the Executive and the Judiciary can work and deliver on their respective mandates. It is only by doing this that we shall serve as an example to enable others to see what we are doing in Kenya. This will ensure that other countries that are not considering peace as being part of their undertakings to look at what Kenya is doing so that peace can prevail in their countries. Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to support the Motion. 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): Proceed, Sen. M. Kajwang’.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I wish to go on record on this very important Motion. The question has always been whether to build bridges or walls. For a long time we, as political leaders, have been busy building walls. As I go on record, I wish to trace some of the adventures that I have also been involved in as a politician and some of the wall building activities that I have undertaken. Shortly after my election, I was one of those who, in a joint sitting of Parliament, came in with whistles and all manner of theatrics and interrupted a solemn speech by President Uhuru Kenyatta. At that point, I had legitimate concerns that I thought could best be dealt with by building walls. Today, in the spirit of reconciliation that this country has adopted, I wish to apologise to the President for that action that we took in the National Assembly some two or three years ago.
I hope that Sen. Outa will also apologise at some point because he was my partner in crime and he was more vigorous than I was in that particular activity.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, we have engaged in street protests and we have ‘eaten’ teargas – just to use that word – we have seen death and we have buried people. We have also faced off with the police. Many things have happened and I hope that in the spirit of reconciliation, at some point we may get an apology for all the hardships that our people have gone through. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, the County I represent, Homa Bay County – which is home to more than one million great men and women – decided that the elections that were scheduled for 26th October, 2017, were not going to take place. We shut down Homa Bay and no elections took place there; but as you heard Sen. Mwaura say, the people of Homa Bay have now come with open arms. They are saying that for too long, they have built walls and they now want to start building bridges in the spirit that has been set by His Excellency Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it will take more than just a handshake to erase all those things that we think have been done to us or the things that we have done to other people. However, there must be a beginning; young people say that it starts with a ‘tap.’ Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I share the aspirations of many young people or many young families in Kenya. For too long, they have been building walls. But they now just want bridges built so that they can get food, good jobs, live in peace; have systems that can work and have a country where things are predictable; from little things like traffic to school fees to the price of food. These are the bridges we must build and not the walls---
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Sen. M. Kajwang’, your time is up. Proceed, Sen. Cherargei.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I join my colleagues to laud the President and the NASA Leader, Raila Odinga, for the good work they have done. It is now time that this country moves on from the preoccupation with the next 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): Very well. Today is Bible day. Proceed, Sen. (Dr.) Langat.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I also rise to support this important and timely Motion, and congratulate Sen. Orengo for bringing it. The unity that was shown by the two leaders of this country is paramount to all of us. That important handshake that took place means goodwill for the investors. That same handshake prevents our country from being politically polarized throughout the years. Our country was in politics throughout and we had forgotten about issues of development. I believe that, that particular handshake will reduce the political polarization in our country and encourage people to go back to work. The two leaders demonstrated that our country is greater than all of us. It also demonstrated that there are no permanent enemies in politics; politics is a game of interests. The greatest interest at this particular time was unity to all of us. I have received several calls and text messages from the people of Bomet County and they are happy with this unity of purpose. I believe that this will also give this House more time to unite, so that we may hold our counties accountable. Earlier, we could not effectively do it because some people, based on their political parties, could have said that we are against their governors or counties. This is the time for all Senators to be united and do their oversight work and hold our county executives more accountable in what they do. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I support this Motion.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Thank you. I advise that you use two minutes because the interest is still very high. The mood has been set; just put your thoughts together. Do not repeat what everybody has said. Proceed, Sen. Judy Pareno.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I will try my best to use the two minutes. I rise to support this Motion and salute His Excellency, President Uhuru Kenyatta and 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.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Your time is up. Sen. Mutula Kilonzo Jnr.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. First, I acknowledge the President and the Rt. Hon. Former Prime Minister for this magnanimous opportunity they took to set aside their differences, selfish or otherwise, to acknowledge this. I have one proposal. Everybody has quoted the Bible, but nobody has quoted the preamble which at the end states ‘Gods bless Kenya’. If President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Rt. Hon. Raila Amollo Odinga are serious, they will go to every place in this Republic – the 47 counties - carrying this preamble like a torch of peace. That peace cannot be a handshake; it must be demonstrated by shaking the hands of the people who possibly lost their children when they should not have. They should show them true peace and repentance. True penance can only come when we have true reconciliation. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, this country will only move forward if we acknowledge that we are sinners and have fallen short of the glory of God. That is the book of Romans. Our leaders must recognize that they have misled our people through divisive politics and they must repent, so that there is true penance. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, lastly, King Solomon after being granted wisdom and married many wives, he failed and said: ‘All is vanity.’ That is in the Book of Ecclesiastes. I plead with the other principals of NASA to set aside their ambitions or otherwise, and follow this path where we will have true peace and build nationhood of this country. God bless Kenya. Thank you.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Well done, Sen. Mutula Kilonzo Jnr. The Chair wishes that every other day was like today. Proceed, Sen. Kwamboka.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I rise in support of this important Motion on building bridges to a new Kenyan nation. I take this opportunity 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.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Well done. Proceed, Sen. Aaron Cheruyiot.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. King David, writing in the book of Psalms 133 says:- “How good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell together in unity. It is like precious oil overflowing down from his head down to the beards of Aaron”. I had to quote the second part – although not relevant – just to hear my name. Mr. Speaker, Sir, this is a great day for this nation. I am so happy and I feel elated as a young leader, that for the first time in this House – even when you take a stroll through social media and the streets of this city and interact with the people that we represent – there is a sigh of hope. In 2007 when we had the unfortunate events of what happened in Kenya, we were told that not many African countries have ever had the chance to turn away from the path that we had taken. On Friday, what happened on the steps of Harambee House, people again reminded us that it is not every African country that has had the opportunity of two protagonists in the political contest coming together and saying, “for the sake of unity, let us build a great nation.” My question this evening is, for how long shall we throw away such golden opportunities? I hope that this time round, we shall be serious, address the issues that have divided us for so long and together, build a nation that we shall be all proud to belong to.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Brief and clear. Proceed, Sen. Milgo.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this chance to also contribute. First of all, I congratulate my great President, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta and the Rt. hon. Raila Amollo Odinga for showing leadership. They have actually demonstrated that even when you have different opinions, we can agree to disagree. The animosity that had bedeviled the country was so much that in certain quarters, some items were resisted despite the fact that those institutions were actually offering employment to our people. Recently, I was in a country with a population of only 1.2 million. Tourists who visit that country are more than residents. It also attracts many investors than we do here. In the course of my interaction with them, one of them told me that he had been in Kenya some time back. I asked him why he was not in Kenya and he told me it is because of lack of peace. I am sure that we are standing today and declaring to all our tourists and investors that there is peace in Kenya. Surely, there could have been no other time than this to say that in all borders of Kenya, there is going to be peace. I am now sure that the economy will do well because our two leaders have shown us the way. 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.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for this opportunity. As other Senators were quoting from the Bible, I was praying silently, but earnestly for God to reveal to me a verse that I can use to describe what is going on. What was revealed to me is from Isaiah 43:19, which says:- “See, I am doing a new thing. Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? Do you not see it? I am making a new way in the wilderness and stream in the wasteland.”
Amen! What has happened in Kenya is historic. Kenyans are very optimistic. This is not the first time that we are optimistic in Kenya. In 2002 and 2007 when Hon. Raila Odinga and Hon. Kibaki came together, we were also rated as the most optimistic people in the world. In 2010 when we promulgated the new Constitution, we were also rated as the most optimistic people in the world. However, all that was lost because of lack of sincerity. Our politics must be changed. We must seize this opportunity to have a paradigm shift in our politics. Every time we go for elections, there is ethnic balkanization. When can we stop this? When you go to secondary schools and universities, students learn together in the spirit of national unity. If you go to churches, people worship together in the spirit of national unity. Why can we not do it ---
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Organise your thoughts. Sen. Nyamunga, proceed.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for giving me this opportunity to add my voice to what my colleagues have raised. This is the first time in history that God has just come down in our land. When we were praying from last year – Christians must have been praying in this land – we have gone through a very difficult time. We did not know that things would end up the way they have. We thank God for that. Above all, we thank our leaders. Mine is a simple message to the two leaders. Now that they have accepted to start the healing of Kenya, it is very important we get the best in terms of leadership in this country. Issues of corruption, bad governance and other vices in our country, should now be a thing of the past. We want to see very good governance and unity of purpose. Moving forward, I know it will not be easy or a walk in the park. However, with the help of God and all of us supporting the two leaders, we will make it. We will not sit back and let anything pass for anything. To me, good governance is first and paramount and must be exercised to the best of the ability of the two leaders and we want to see prosperity. When President Kibaki came together with Hon. Raila, we saw prosperity. If 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 rise to support the Motion. From the onset, I congratulate his Excellency the President, Hon. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta and his Excellency the Rt. hon. Raila Odinga. This is a great moment in Kenya. As young politicians, we want to emulate and learn from them, that there is a time that the interests of the nation are bigger than an individual’s. From today, we, as a House, need to come together as representatives of the people from the 47 counties. We need to preach peace and unity to our young people and women who are mostly affected by these divisions in terms of business and politics. We now need to go back and preach to them. I also urge the country to look into structural and systemic problems that have been dividing us, as a country. I pray to God that we, as a county, move forward.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for the opportunity to add my voice and join my colleagues in supporting this Motion. I congratulate our leaders, the President of the Republic of Kenya, his Excellency the President, Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta and the Rt. hon. Raila Odinga, for the great act that we saw them do last Friday. As we have all witnessed while going around the country, we have seen how much this has gone towards healing what has been a very divided country. Sometimes we may not want to accept the way things are. This has been a country that is split 50 to 50 per cent which has been bad for the fabric of our country and economic and social development. All sorts of things have not worked well despite a push by many to try and bring it back on track. However, by the decision of the two leaders to come together and by just having that handshake in public, it has gone a long way in healing this country. As we move forward, I also urge leaders that if we play our role in helping to bring the country together as they have done, then we shall go a long way in healing this country, getting better days ahead and building the bridges after such a bitterly contested time we have gone through in the last few years. I also support this Motion.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Proceed, Sen. (Prof.) Ekal.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for also giving me time to add my voice to what my colleagues have already spoken. I am one of the few people who spent a lot of time thinking and worrying about Kenya. I have been complaining, talking to myself and to anybody I came close to as to why this happened to us. It was very possible that we were going to split this country into two sections, so, I got worried. I wanted Kenya to remain intact. I have seen so many ugly things based on parties where I come from. People did not speak to each other, blows have been exchanged, bad words have been used, and some bullets have been fired. There was much division because of the elections of 2017. As much as this handshake has taken place, my interest and desire is that the two gentlemen and statesmen that have decided to shake hands go ahead and elaborate and explain this issue to the people so that even those from my community understand what the handshake means. With that they will understand, come together and heal those 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): Order, Sen. (Prof.) Ekal! Your time is up. Proceed, Sen. (Eng.) Mahamud.
Thank you very much, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. The two leaders, President Kenyatta and Rt. Hon. Raila Amollo Odinga have shown that leadership is about action and not positions. In fact, they have shown that this country can be divided by leaders and also united by leaders. The handshake on Friday 9th at Harambee House brought tranquility in this country. I thank them for being that bold and decisive. Without reference to anybody, they came out and made this county peaceful as it is today. It was said by Martin Luther King Jnr., that the ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at the time of challenge and controversy. We have had a lot of controversy. In fact, this country was almost dismembered. We were talking about two countries at one stage. We did many things. In fact, our leaders have saved this country. We have done it again for the second time. After the 2007/2008 Post-election Violence (PEV), when the two leaders then, His Excellency President Kibaki and Rt. Hon. Raila Amollo Odinga shook hands, the country just became peaceful and people’s hopes were raised. Now, the hopes of this country are very high. We at this Senate must support whatever is brought up in that agenda of building bridges for a new Kenyan nation. Let us be prepared and be innovative. It is the right time. A time like this---
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Thank you. Proceed, Sen. Ndwiga.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, what happened on Friday is actual revelation of the mystery of God. God works in mysterious ways in the wonders He performs. We have prayed as a nation that we could see this action happen. I hope that this House will seize the moment to look afresh at the Kenyan Constitution. We want to look at the issues that divide this nation. We want to seriously address what causes these divisions. Every time we have an election, we anticipate and expect that there are going to be ethnic divisions in this country. Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, it is time that this Senate took the lead to look at the Constitution afresh so that we do not relapse into the bad behavior. We need to sanitize our politics. That can only be sanitized through strengthening of institutions. I accept that we need to strengthen the Judiciary and the Parliamentary institution so that people can get the representation that they deserve. We also need to look afresh at the Executive itself and see what needs to be strengthened further in the Constitution. Finally, I wish to send a word of warning to Kenyans. This is now a new revelation. You do not have to create enemies on behalf of anybody. Those of us who have been attacking one another, particularly the young people in the social media, please, this is a good revelation that---
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Thank you, Sen. Ndwiga. 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.
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, for allowing me to support this Motion and congratulate the two great leaders for putting aside their differences and bringing the political temperatures of this country down and giving us a feeling of fresh air in the county. Good politics is good life. Most of the reforms that happened in this county happened when His Excellency Mwai Kibaki and Raila Odinga agreed. An example of those are our Constitution and Vision 2030. The wealth of this country will grow if our politics is good because economy is about the perception by people. A sense of peace also brings a sense of hope. People will like to invest more. I am on record in this House having said that we should learn from our neighbor Somalia. I repeat – there are children born 25 years ago who have never seen peace. We need to learn from that. With the current development, I am more than convinced that Vision 2030 is not a dream but it will become a reality. The four big projects will also become real. I am also convinced that we should embark on reforms so that what happens every electioneering year should never happen.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Very well. Mover, please, in three or so minutes, reply.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, briefly, I thank all the Members who have contributed to this Motion. The views that have been given form a very good record. The deliberations of this House as usual are in the HANSARD. We can go an extra mile of compiling and making it available to the two leaders, His Excellency Uhuru Kenyatta and His Excellency, Raila Amollo Odinga so that they could get the feeling not only of the support but also the ideas we have contributed to this debate and project that is going on. The Bible has been quoted a lot here, but in the name of our brothers who are of the Islamic faith, I have found another verse here which is very compelling. It says:- “All you who believe, be persistently standing firm in justice as witnesses for Allah.” This is all about doing justice. I hope that this debate is not going to be derailed by thinking about the 2022 elections. In fact, a lot of those who are now clamouring to be included in the process are not doing so because of the project but their own political objectives which are extraneous to the reason why these two leaders came together. I am glad to notice that the Deputy President the other day said that we let ourselves discuss the agenda and forget about the politics of 2022. Once we begin to talk about 2022 and to think about those who want to play a role then, this debate will be derailed. I think President Uhuru Kenyatta and Rt.Hon. Raila Odinga should take charge. There is going to be an appropriate time when everybody will have their say and participation. However, at this point in time let us not get in to the situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo where they said that they should have everybody. They have been talking about elections and democracy for the last 20 years. We do not want to take that amount of time. In conclusion, speaking in---. I beg to move. 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): Very well. Thank you, Sen. Orengo, and all the Senators who have contributed to this Motion. We have come to the end of debate on this Motion. I would like to say two things:- One, I determine that this is not a matter concerning counties and therefore we are going to make a voice vote. Two, in line with what some of you, including the Mover, have said, I would want to communicate to the House that this is not the end of this matter. From here, the Senate will be transmitting the Order Paper, the Resolution and the HANSARD report of this House on this matter to His Excellency the President and the Rt. Hon. Former Prime minister so that they can benefit from the very important input that this House has made. So your contribution has not been in vain.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Order, Senators. Next order! We will not be able to transact the business on Order No. 7 today. I, therefore, direct that the statements that were supposed to be requested or issued today be deferred to tomorrow afternoon. They will appear in the Order Paper tomorrow.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): With regard to that Order, I do not see Sen. Wamatangi who was supposed to reply. So, we defer it.
. (Prof.) Kindiki): We will move to Order No. 12. Depending on the progress, the Chair will make determination on whether or not we are able to transact Order No. 13, 14 and 15 at an appropriate time. Next Order!
Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir. I appreciate this chance to move this Motion. It is something I consider so passionate and important to me. Being in this House, this is a desire that I have had far too long---
(Sen. (Prof.) Kindiki): Order, Senator. You know you have served in this Senate for one and a half terms. This is one term and the last one, half. You start by moving the Motion. After that, you say all the other stories and things.
Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I knew I would not escape your wrath. I apologise. Let me do the right thing. ESTABLISHMENT OF AN AD-HOC COMMITTEE TO INQUIRE INTO THE CHALLENGES FACING THE TEA SECTOR IN KENYA ` Mr. Deputy Speaker, Sir, I beg to move the following Motion: THAT, AWARE that Kenya is the third leading producer of black tea in the world accounting for about 10 per cent of the total world tea production; COGNIZANT that tea contributes four per cent of Kenya’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 26 per cent of the country’s export earnings; FURTHER AWARE THAT the tea industry in Kenya supports close to six hundred thousand small scale farmers and provides direct or indirect employment to over two million Kenyans; REALIZING that despite tea being Kenya’s most important cash crop, the Kenyan tea farmers, who are mainly small scale farmers spread over fourteen counties, continue to receive a disproportionate return for the resources and time they put in tea production; FURTHER ACKNOWLEDGING that the sector continues to face numerous other challenges which require urgent intervention to ensure that this critical sector thrives for the benefit of our economy; 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.) Kamar): Very well. Sen. (Prof.) Ongeri, you have the Floor. Sen.
Thank you, Madam Temporary Speaker. I stand to add my voice and second this Motion on the Establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee to look in to the affairs of tea industry. Such an important and crucial industry has languished in difficulties and frustrations because the returns that a farmer obtains from tea are paltry. Sen. Aaron Cheruiyot has already enumerated the enormous support that the tea industry contributes to our Gross Domestic Product (GDP). A contribution of 4 per cent of the GDP is not mean. If you look at it as a stand-alone element in the area of the agricultural produce, that contribution goes up to 26 per cent. If you look at the contribution of foreign exchange earnings from the tea industry alone, it goes up to 67 per cent of the earning of the hard foreign cash, which goes to sustain our Central Bank in terms of foreign exchange reserves. Who does that? It is the 600,000 small-scale farmers. What are the investments? It is only fair at this stage that I declare my interest that I am a tea farmer. Therefore, I should not be judged that I am being punitive because I am a tea farmer. What are the problems incurred by this small-scale farmer? The small-scale farmer has to till land but the fuel costs have gone up. After planting, it takes two or three years for you to start picking tea. There is also the question of fertilisers. You will also realise that the cost of fertilisers has gone up exponentially. Therefore, the farmer is at the mercy of those who produce fertilisers. Fortunately, a tea crop is not one of those crops that require applying agro-chemicals because it is pesticide free. Therefore, those who enjoy the end product enjoy the fragrance, beauty and aroma of the Kenyan tea. The farmer gets nothing in return. A farmer can pick tea for two or three years before he prunes to get another established crop. The cost of pruning has also gone up. It used to cost Kshs1 to prune a stem but the cost has gone up in some areas up to Kshs6, Kshs7 or Kshs8. Does a farmer get a corresponding price increase? The answer is no. So, the farmer remains stagnant and a very frustrated person. Recently they brought some subsidized fertilisers. Sometimes the fertilisers that come are of questionable quality because you apply fertiliser on tea crops and it just dampens the production. You do not get the kind of shootings that you would expect to get. The requirement is that you pick a leaf and a bud but multinational companies use machines that cut everything. Use of machines denies people employment opportunities. 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.
Thank you Madam Temporary Speaker. I rise to support this Motion because tea, as it has been stated, is a major cash crop that adds to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Kenya. It is unfortunate that there are many challenges that are bedeviling the tea sector. Since the Eighth or Ninth Parliament, many legislations have been put in place and at this point, we would wish to know what has been happening with those legislations that have been put up yet they have never seen the light of day. There are many pieces of legislations and I want to imagine that with this Committee, we shall establish one legislation that is going to bring a solution to this sector once and for all. If you look at the tea farmers you will mistake them for actually casual workers. They are actually slaves to whatever they have done with imagination that they are going to make money. When we were going to school in those early days, tea, in this case, was a very reliable crop, but of late, there are a lot of challenges; from the tea collection centres to the factory itself where the tea is being processed; to the transportation and eventually the sale of the tea. This Committee should be able to address--- As a tea growing farmer as Sen. (Prof.) Ongeri has said, I have faced many challenges. When it comes to plucking the tea, the farmers pluck it the whole day. Sometimes, the tea leaves are rejected and thrown out by the clerks at the buying and collection centres because of poor quality. We know that major companies would take any other tea and blend it with the quality tea from our small scale-farmers. Madam Temporary Speaker, in most countries, our black tea is being used as a raw material to make other teas. Many a times, you go to various places and you are given high quality tea yet those countries do not grow tea. They take our black tea and blend them with other substances to produce a high-quality tea. I am sure this Committee will look into the idea of adding value to the tea so that our farmers can receive their entitlement. The multinational companies are affecting the farmers. There are many middlemen that are coming up with factories. While somebody was imagining that the price of tea is Kshs27 per kilogramme, these middlemen are now buying at Kshs22 per kilogramme and there is no bonus for the farmers. I am sure these Members are going to look at these issues and come up with recommendations which will solve the problems that are bedeviling the tea subsector once and for all. Sen. Cheruiyot, I did my research in PhD on what is causing the low prices of tea. So, in the course of your investigations, you can consult me for some addition. Most of the Committee Members are from the tea growing areas and they are also affected. I support them. I am sure that at the end of these five months, they will come up with recommendations to address the challenges facing the tea subsector once and for all. I beg to support.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kamar): Thank you. Proceed, Sen. Cherargei.
Thank you, Madam Temporary Speaker, for this opportunity. I know the tea subsector is facing a lot of crises at the moment. I am also privileged to be 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.
Thank you, Madam Temporary Speaker, for giving me the chance to add my voice together to those of other hon. Senators. Coming from Turkana County, I am not necessarily a tea grower. However, I want to contribute as a Kenyan. Tea is very important to Kenyan lives. I lived oversees for many years and can tell you that nothing is as good as a cup of Kenyan tea. We would go out to look for shops that sell Kenyan tea, knowing that it is first class Kenyan tea which is usually sent overseas. We would buy and brew a nice pot of tea, and enjoy it with a lot of relish. Madam Temporary Speaker, I also passed through Kericho County a number of times as a student on my way to Kisumu County and back. I always admired that ‘carpet’ of tea from a distance. I always felt I could dwell on it and have a nice time. So, I have had good experience with tea. Therefore, it makes me sad to hear that multinationals are taking advantage of our people and an industry that should be helping our people. It is a good idea that Sen. Cheruiyot brought this Motion, so that we can tighten loopholes, where multinationals are taking advantage of us. We want our own people to have advantage of what they produce and not people from outside. I know that they make a lot of money by selling that tea overseas. I would buy a kilo of Kenyan tea at so many dollars, and I know that they do not pay our people in dollars. So, they are taking advantage of our own people. This Committee should, therefore, tighten those loopholes and make this a useful crop for our people to have a decent living from the work they are putting in. Thank you, Madam Temporary Speaker.
Thank you, Madam Temporary Speaker, for allowing me to also contribute to this important Motion. Most of the issues were mentioned very comprehensively by Sen. (Prof.) Ongeri, and I was so excited. However, I want to add that in spite of the tea sector being the pillar of the economy of this country, the farmer down there is suffering and needs to be rescued. Most of the small scale farmers in areas like Bomet, Kisii and Kericho counties grow tea on land that could be used to grow food crops. As a result, a number of children from these areas are malnourished. There is a lot of hunger and, perhaps, we also need to come up with another Motion for these people to be supported with relief food. This is because tea farming no longer enables them to buy food, yet they have used all their land to grow tea. This group of Members who have been proposed for this important mission should find out the issues facing the tea farmers. This is a very important step towards saving the situation. So far, most farmers in Bomet County have stopped picking tea because it is no longer economically viable. Some are even uprooting tea because of these issues. So, this Motion is timely and the Committee should conduct thorough 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.
Madam Temporary Speaker, I would be happy if I had more time to talk on this hot subject. I believe that if tea farmers hear that I was here today supporting them--- This is because what is happening in the tea sector now is bullish. Those of us who grow tea – and I want to confess that I am a tea grower – can tell you that the pain that goes into growing tea, up to the moment where you get peanuts, is so great that not many people will enjoy that cup of tea. In fact, not many people who enjoy a cup of tea know what effort we put in to produce tea. It is very sad that in many tea growing areas, there is abject poverty. The areas used to be examples of prosperity in this country. Today, if you visit most of these tea growing areas you will be surprised that poverty has visited those places. It is extremely sad. That is why this Motion is important. It is time this House looked seriously at the real cause of the problems of the tea sector. Madam Temporary Speaker, previous Parliaments have been looking at the issue of tea. I know that Agriculture Committees, especially the one that I was involved in travelled everywhere with the aim of improving the sector. Even today, so many years later, we still have the same subject on our table. I believe that this time round, we will get to the bottom of the problem of this sector. Listening to my colleagues who have contributed earlier, it is true that there are myriad problems which affect the tea sector. I want us to be careful. There are those areas where we have Kenya Tea Development Authority (KTDA). Let us look at the small scale holders and KTDA. There are also those other places where we have the big companies that produce and process tea. The problems are different. In areas where we have big companies, the issue is land and what they do with it. In KTDA-managed factories, the myriad of problems are what they are doing with the tea. We have said time and again that we do not want to visit London and the first thing you see in a supermarket is English breakfast tea. There is not one bush of tea in the whole of Britain, but that is what you find. Why is it that today we cannot get into value addition? I agree with Sen. (Prof.) Ongeri. Why is it that we are throwing away our produce and giving other people to go and add value out there and our farmers end up with peanuts? These are some of the things that we are going to interrogate seriously this time round so that by the time we are through, our farmers will get what they should be getting. Madam Temporary Speaker, for those of us who know tea farmers, a woman wakes up in the morning sometimes with their children to go to pick tea. By the time they have delivered the tea, sometimes it is evening and the children cannot concentrate the following day in school. In most of these places, the education standards have also gone down drastically as a result of the standards in this sector not being properly organized. We want to relook at the entire process of tea from production and the way we process tea in our factories up to marketing. We want to seriously interrogate the marketing the tea. 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.) Kamar: Sen. Ndwiga, please, hold for a second, please. I direct under Standing Order 32 (2) that for the convenience of the Senate and the few contributors that would like to contribute, we extend the House for a further seven minutes so that we conclude the debate and the question.
Thank you, Madam Temporary Speaker, for these few minutes to contribute to this Motion. I had given my undertaking to the distinguished Senator for Kericho when he was mooting the idea, that I would be here to support him. This is because tea production has for a long time been the main contributor to our economy. At one time it was the number one foreign exchange earner sharing from time to time the same slot with tourism and now floriculture and horticulture. The people who work in the tea sector and the management of the tea industry - as my colleagues before me have said - require a major surgery. This is because we have, on one hand the big corporates like James Finlay who have a seamless flow of management and profits - never mind how they exploit our poor workers - something the Committee will also have to look at. I speak this because whether you go to Kericho, Nandi Hills, Murang’a, Limuru or wherever, in all parts of the country, you find 60-70 per cent of the workers there are from the “ Mulembe nation”. I would want to see that everybody involved in the tea industry gets their just returns. Over-taxation is a problem. The other day, we saw a governor waking up in the morning and imposing heavy tax on tea passing through the Port of Mombasa. We need some synchrony in the taxation regime between the national and county governments so that the farmer is not hurt in the process. Madam Temporary Speaker, more importantly, the cartels that run Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) are the ones that have caused a serious disadvantage and problems to the farmers. There is a group of people who have become a fixture in everything that happens in the tea industry. KTDA is supposed to help the farmer. It is an investment of the farmer. In the old days, farmers used to earn very good bonuses. You may recall the scandals that are always there when girls from Koinange Street are in Kericho, Nandi Hills or Kapsabet, when bonus is paid in order to ‘help the farmers spend their money quickly’.
Now you cannot even talk about bonuses. It is peanuts. My friend Sen. Ndwiga has been in this industry for some time. You find that during campaigns, we kept on getting information that the bonuses paid in some parts of the country are completely different from others. You find that one part of the country is getting almost double what others are getting. This is not right because we do not have any empirical evidence that there is inferior tea from some parts of the country and superior tea from others. Why would KTDA then be paying differentiated bonuses to farmers? 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.) Kamar): Sen. Cheruiyot, you promised you can respond in one and half minutes.
Madam Temporary Speaker, I will need less. I have heard the contributions of all the distinguished colleagues that have spoken to this matter. We will take into consideration and live up to the demands and the expectations of our colleagues. With those remarks, I beg to move.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kamar): Thank you Senators, may I now put the question. Hon. Senators, this Motion zeros in on the formation of the Committee. Thus, it is a House keeping matter and has nothing to do with counties and for that reason, we will vote by acclamation.
(Sen. (Prof.) Kamar): Hon. Senators, it is now 6.37pm. Pursuant to Standing Order 31 (2) and for the convenience of the Senate, I interrupt the business of the Senate. The Senate, therefore, stands adjourned until Thursday, 15th March, 2018, at 2.30pm. The house rose at 6.37 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.