Court Nullifies Tana River County Assembly Decision To Pass BBI Bill

Court Nullifies Tana River County Assembly Decision To Pass BBI Bill

The High Court has nullified a decision by the Tana River County Assembly to pass the BBI Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020.

Tana River is among 43 Counties that recently voted to pass the proposal to amend the Constitution through the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI).

In the verdict delivered on Tuesday, the court ruled that there was no public participation and inclusivity in the process.

The ruling, however, has no effect on the ongoing BBI process as the Bill has already attained 24 counties required for it to be presented to Parliament for debate before it’s subjected to a national referendum.

Three out of 47 Counties voted to reject the Bill. They are Baringo, Nandi and Elgeyo Marakwet.

Uasin Gishu Members of County Assembly, in an unprecedented move, on March 9 abstained from voting on the BBI Bill.

A total of 27 MCAs supported a report presented on the floor of the House by the Legal Committee to neither vote Yes nor No on the Bill, hence abstaining.

Only 19 MCAs opposed the report, 17 of them being nominated members.

Uasin Gishu County is located in Deputy President William Ruto’s Rift Valley home turf. The DP has said severally that BBI is not a priority at at moment.

Counties that supported the Bill include Mandera, Kilifi, Wajir, Turkana and Kericho.

Other counties that passed the Bill include Embu, Isiolo, Marsabit, Bomet, Kiambu, Migori, Kwale, Taita Taveta, Tharaka Nithi, Meru, Kirinyaga, Kakamega, Nyamira, Nyandarua, Nyeri, Lamu, Machakos, Murang’a, Bungoma, Kitui, Narok, Garissa and Nakuru.

Others are Nairobi, Vihiga, Laikipia, Siaya, Kisumu, Homa Bay, Busia, West Pokot, Trans Nzoia, Kajiado, Kisii and Samburu.

The BBI Bill proposes among others, the increasing of county allocation from the current 15 per cent to 35 and the creation of 70 more constituencies across the country. It also introduces the position of the prime minister and two deputy prime minister positions.