Kenya: Court Nullifies 23 Laws Passed By National Assembly Without Senate's Input

29 October 2020

Nairobi — The High Court has nullified 23 laws that were passed by the National Assembly without the input of the Senate, dealing a major blow to the government.

The judgment was issued by a three-judge bench of Justices Jairus Ngaah, Anthony Ndung'u and Teresiah Matheka.

They ruled that the National Assembly cannot pass laws without the Senate's input.

The national assembly had passed some 23 laws on devolution without the input of the Senate whose protests were ignored.

"Where the Constitution decrees a specific procedure to be followed in the enactment of legislation, both Houses of Parliament are bound to follow that procedure. If Parliament violates the procedural requirements of the supreme law of the land, it is for the courts of law, not least the Supreme Court to assert the authority and supremacy of the Constitution," the judges ruled.

They said for such laws to be passed, the Speaker of the National Assembly must first seek concurance of his Senate counterpart, particularly on matters touching on devolution.

"One Speaker cannot unilaterally make a decision as to whether the Bill does or does not concern counties or whether a question as to whether the Bill is one that concerns counties does or does not arise," they said in a landmark ruling.

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