Last week, MPs passed the Miscellaneous Statute Amendment Bill which will allow party hopping, provide a soft landing for unsuccessful presidential and gubernatorial candidates as well as setting a university degree as the minimum qualification for anyone aspiring to these positions. But even before they digested the import of their amendments, some of the MPs are now trying to reverse what they have passed.
The ongoing farce raises fundamental questions about the ability (or lack) of our MPs to intelligently and objectively debate issues. That some of them are now seeking to petition the executive (President Kibaki) not to assent to the Bill confirms fears that Kenyans have always had about their political leaders-most of them do not understand what is presented to them for debate and when they do vote on issues, they do so on the basis of short-term selfish interests.
We suggest that Kibaki should not sign the Bill into law and return it to Parliament for further debate on the amendments to the electoral and political parties Acts. Unless this happens, it is going to be yet another blot against him and his legacy if the courts have to intervene to ensure the constitution is upheld.