What you need to know:
- They argued that they have done what their electorate instructed them to do during public participation meetings.
The Nandi County Assembly has rejected the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) draft constitutional amendment Bill, becoming the second to do so after Baringo MCAs shot it down two weeks ago.
Nandi County MCAs launched a direct line of attack on the report on Thursday, citing additional constituencies and an expanded Parliament which they said will overburden Kenyans.
They also argued that they have done what their electorate instructed them to do during public participation meetings.
Ward reps from Deputy President William Ruto’s political backyard in North Rift said they are against anything which will overburden Kenyans.
Kapsabet Ward MCA Fred Kipkemboi argued that car grants should not be used to hoodwink them, adding that the facility is their right.
“As leaders, we should know what is best for our people and they are the ones who told us during the public participation that we should reject this Bill because it will add more taxes to them,” he said.
“You cannot tell us that you are giving us car grants to adopt this Bill and the projects are supervised in my Ward with that car...there is no way a county executive and Cabinet Secretaries have big vehicles and us politicians have none,” he said.
Tempers flared when when the BBI Bill was tabled, with one faction of the 36 MCAs present clashing with others over whether it should be adopted.
23 MCAs voted to reject the Bill while 13 voted in its support. This is happening a day before DP Ruto tours the region.
County Assemblies Forum (CAF) Secretary General Kipkirui Chepkwony and Terik MCA Osborne Komen asked their colleagues to reject it.
Lessos Ward rep Emmanuel Rono wondered why the 2010 Constitution should be amended when President Uhuru Kenyatta has failed to respect it by failing to appoint 41 judges.
“President Kenyatta will go down in history as the Head of State who abused the Constitution by not appointing the 41 Judges," he claimed.
Another group of MCAs led by Nandi County Assembly Deputy Speaker Wilson Sang, Chemelil Ward MCA Hilary Koech and Minority leader Eliud Kirongo supported the BBI Bill and urged their colleagues to look at the bigger picture and delink it from the 2022 succession race.
Eyes on Uasin Gishu, Elgeyo-Marakwet
At the same time, eyes are now on Uasin Gishu and Elgeyo-Marakwet counties which are set to vote on the Bill next week.
Elgeyo Marakwet majority leader Nathan Kilimo said they will not allow outside forces to influence adoption of the BBI Bill, noting that the Assembly will follow the law and do what local residents want.
“The committee will gather all the information from 20 Wards of this county during the public participation and make a conclusion. The same report will be deliberated on the floor and agree to either pass or reject it. At this stage both the government and DP have got little to do with it,” said Mr Kilimo.
Uasin Gishu Speaker David Kiplagat underscored that the county's MCAs have the right to vote independently without coercion, depending on the views of their electorate.