Kenya: Samburu the 12th County to Pass BBI Bill After Unanimous Vote

22 February 2021

The Samburu County Assembly on Monday became the 12th to pass the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill.

The 26 MCAs unanimously voted to pass the Bill during a session chaired by Speaker Solomon Lempere.

Mr Lempere said the ward representatives passed the highly publicised Bill following extensive public participation.

Samburu joins Nairobi, Kisii, Trans Nzoia, Kisumu, Laikipia, Siaya, Vihiga, Homa Bay, West Pokot, Kajiado and Busia counties which gave the Bill a clean bill of health.

Speaker Lempere called for a vote after over two hours of debate, with all 26 MCAs approving the Bill.

Initially, there was a growing perception that Samburu, that is in Rift Valley, would reject the draft on grounds that it will curtail Deputy President William Ruto's presidential bid in 2022.

"We had the opportunity to discuss the Bill after public engagement with locals across all our three sub-counties; Samburu North, East and Central. There has been a misconception about the contents of the Bill so I am glad the members passed the draft after intensive consultations," Mr Lempere said.

Commitment

Samburu Woman Representative Maison Leshoomo, who was also in the BBI taskforce, said leaders from the region have committed to support the constitutional amendment process.

Ms Leshoomo noted that the amendments will ultimately offer a solution to the problems ailing the region prone to insecurity.

"We, as pastoralists, are among the biggest winners in the BBI. We took the task to mobilise registered voters throughout the county to help actualise the constitutional amendment. We have had the same problems since independence," she said.

She added that the Constitution-making process is a political one that needs the support of leaders across the divide.

Samburu is the second county in the Rift Valley region to pass the Bill.

So far, only Baringo County has rejected the Bill that requires the support of 24 out of the 47 counties to progress to Parliament.

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