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LSK to lead occupy parliament mass protests

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[LSK President Nelson Haki. Photo/courtesy].

Law Society of Kenya- LSK President Nelson Havi has announced occupation of parliament process from October, 12 until Kenyans are allowed to elect new representatives.

He said the constitution allows the people to exercise their “sovereign power directly.”

Addressing journalists in Nairobi, Havi further called on Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai to withdraw bodyguards assigned to legislators once the set timeline lapses.

“We have also asked the Parliamentary Commission to ensure that the two houses of Parliament are closed to members of the National Assembly and Senate effective October 12 because these individuals will no longer have the authority of Kenyans to hold themselves as Parliamentarians,” he said.

Confusion

Early this week, Chief Justice David Maraga asked President Uhuru Kenyatta to dissolve Parliament over the continued violation of the two thirds gender rule.

Havi said the problem will be solved through a by- election.

He blamed political party leaders for failing to ensure the two-third gender rule is observed at nomination stage.

He said LSK will write to the European Union, East African Community, World Bank and other international development partners to cease transacting business with Kenya where such a business requires parliamentary approval and oversight.

“This is a grave matter, but it must be undertaken here and now, for there to be adherence to the rule of law and constitutionalism,” Havi asserted.

In his advice, Maraga said he was on five petitions filed pursuant to Article 261 (7) of the Constitution.

He said the petitions received between April 2019 and July 2020 had been consolidated into one.

Laxity

“It is incontestable that Parliament has not complied with the High Court order, As such, for over 9 years now, Parliament has not enacted the legislation required to implement the two-thirds gender rule which, as the court of Appeal observed in its said judgment, it is clear testimony of Parliament’s lackadaisical attitude and conduct in this matter. Consequently, it is my constitutional duty to advise Your Excellency to dissolve Parliament under Article 261 (7) of the Constitution.”

Maraga said although Parliament’s dissolution may cause great inconvenience, it was necessary to promote respect for the rule of law.

“There is no doubt that the dissolution of Parliament will cause inconvenience and even economic hardship. The fact that Kenya is in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic only exacerbated the potential impact of the decision. Yet that is a clear result Kenyans desired for Parliament’s failure to enact legislation they deemed necessary. We must never forget that more often than not, there is no gain with pain,” said the Chief Justice.

The petitions are based on the failure by lawmakers to comply with four court orders compelling Parliament to enact legislation to operationalize the two-thirds gender rule despite a Supreme Court order issue in 2015.