Showing posts from May, 2015

The odd, queer and quirky at Kenya's national prayer breakfast

PHOTO CAPTION: The tables set for the National Prayer Breakfast at Nairobi's Safari Park Hotel, in this picture that I took early morning, two hours before the guests settled in.  A day after calling opposition politicians “fools” anddismissing their style of politics as “uncivilised”, President Uhuru Kenyatta joined other politicians and the country’s top officials for the annual prayer breakfast in Nairobi. The twist of the event saw politicians, who usually tear each other in public forums, and others of them known for impunity and misconduct, gather at the five-star Safari Park Hotel, to preach, pray and sing as they sought divine intervention in the problems of the country. That oddity was not lost on President Kenyatta and his Deputy President William Ruto, who when they rose to speak, had to tell the “wonderful politicians” -- in the President’s words-- to walk the talk. Ruto left the crowd in stitches when he said that the thought it was a “mistake” f

Uncertainty over legality of budget process as MPs differ with senators on county billions

The crucial talks to salvage the national budget for the next financial year had to be postponed for a fortnight following a bad-tempered disagreement between senators and members of the National Assembly in the team appointed by both Houses to reach a compromise on how much money counties should get. National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi threw the spanner in the works when he told MPs that it will be wrong for them to go ahead and look at the Sh2.1 trillion budget estimates without a law in place to determine the sharing of money between the national government and the 47 county governments. "The law is very clear that the counties and the national government should prepare budget estimates as per the Division of Revenue Act. That Act is not in place. Whatever they'll be doing will therefore be preparatory works," said Muturi just after Majority Leader Aden Duale tabled the budget estimates of the National Executive and those of the Judiciary. LEGAL SHORTCUTS Th

Blow to Kenyan women as Members of Parliament opt to make two-thirds gender rule 'progressive'

The prospect of more women joining the country's politics on the back of a constitutional requirement was shattered yesterday with the publication of a new Bill that makes it "progressive" for that requirement of at least one-third of all elected or appointed officials to be from either gender. The move came as the final plot in the scheming of lawmakers to dodge the judicial deadline to make sure that the number of women in the country's bicameral Parliament entered the penultimate stage. The MPs quickly bulldozed the Bill into the First Reading just a day after it was published, because, they were headed for a month-long break. They said they want to amend article 81(b) to ensure that laws for women inclusion in political seats is done "progressively". "We want to make sure that this is progressively achieved over a period of time," said the chairman of the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee Samuel Chepkonga. READ ALSO: ADEN DUAL