Kimunya: IEBC behind Elections Bill 2021
The Leader of the Majority in the National Assembly, Amos Kimunya (pictured) has clarified that Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) is behind the Elections (Amendment) Bill 2021.
Kimunya who is the Kipipiri MP downplayed the myriad of dissenting remarks on the bill that have since emanated from across the political divide.
Kimunya's bill attracted criticism from Azimio la Umoja-leaning leaders, One Kenya Alliance (OKA) leaders and legislators affiliated with the nascent Kenya Kwanza coalition.
Deputy President William Ruto and his newly-found ally Musalia Mudavadi also termed the bill as retrogressive and an assault on the 2010 Constitution.
The bill mostly faced criticism due to its proposition that seeks to ban live streaming of the presidential results either by television or online platforms.
The controversial bill also proposes that the decision of the High Court on a petition filed against a governor heard and dispensed off by the High Court while that of a Member of the County Assembly (MCA) be determined by a Resident Magistrate’s court.
In his rebuttal, Kimunya asked the critics of the bill to hold their horses since the proposition is still in its incubation period.
"We have not even started the public participation. We will be inviting people to make their recommendations and observations on those proposals. The JLAC committee will coordinate all that and will bring all the necessary amendments after listening to all stakeholders.
"So we don't need a heated debate as if the law has passed. It is only a draft before the house awaiting people to debate on it," the Leader of Majority stated.
While beseeching leaders opposed to the bill to formally lodge their complaints with the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee, the former Finance Minister further stated that the current debate around the raft of propositions in the bill is premature and politically motivated.
"I think all this debate; people saying they will shoot it down or whatever, is premature. What we need is a more focused debate. People should be saying which clauses they have a problem with for JLAC committee to look into them.
"As the mover of the bill, I am also listening. And we will sit as a House and pass a law that is good for Kenya. People should therefore cease talking about who is supporting or who is not. Let that discussion happen in parliament and within the legal framework of law-making," he added.
The Majority Leader also stated categorically that the public has a window, through public participation, to express their views on the bill. He asked Kenyans to stop panicking and political leaders to cease creating anxiety as the country enters the homestretch to the August polls.