Curtain falls on the 12th Parliament before polls

Longest serving MPs

The National Assembly adjourned sine die (indefinitely, with no set date of resumption) on June 9, 2022 ahead of the August 9 General Election.

Photo credit: Benjamin Situma | Nation Media Group

The National Assembly adjourned sine die (indefinitely, with no set date of resumption) Thursday ahead of the August 9 General Election as MPs in an almost near emotional fashion recounted their time in the 12th Parliament.

The adjournment effectively brings down the curtains on the sixth and last session of the House that was inaugurated on August 31, 2017. The Senate is expected to follow suit next week.

This means that, after today, the House can only convene for a special sitting on the request of the Leader of the Majority to Speaker Justin Muturi if there is a matter that requires the intervention of the House and cannot wait.

A proposal to have the calendar of the House extended by a week failed after MPs threatened to shoot it down, forcing the House leadership to abandon the idea.

Adjourn sine die

Mr Muturi had argued that it was not proper for one House of Parliament to adjourn sine die while the other was still in session.

Parliament is the duality of the National Assembly and the Senate. By 3.30pm yesterday, Mr Muturi alerted the House that the time to deal with the adjournment motion had arrived, meaning that any other business that appeared on the Order Paper, and which had not been considered, fell. Leader of the Majority Amos Kimunya told the MPs that they could be recalled anytime to consider business that may arise.

“It’s the last day of the 12th Parliament in this chamber. Even as we adjourn, we are MPs until August 8, 2022. We are only taking a recess but we are on duty,” Mr Kimunya reminded his colleagues.

Deputy Speaker Moses Cheboi (Kuresoi North) assured MPs that they will make it back. Former leader of majority and Garissa Township MP Aden Duale has served in the House for 15 years now even as he seeks to defend his seat. His contribution did not go without special reference to President Kenyatta, former prime minister Raila Odinga and Deputy President William Ruto.

‘Very humble hustler’

“I have great respect for President Kenyatta and Mr Odinga. They contributed to the development of my political career,” said Mr Duale. He described DP Ruto “a very humble hustler”.

Of the 342 Bills that were introduced in the House, 140 were passed out of which 114 got the presidential assent while 26 others are still in the Senate.

Besides vetting and confirming Justice Martha Koome as the first woman Chief Justice, MPs also considered the appointments of over 60 ambassadors and High Commissioners, Cabinet Secretaries and Principal Secretaries and commissioners amongst other key government appointments.

13 members die

It was also during the 12th session that a record 13 members of the Senate and the National Assembly died while in office.

In December 2017 Francis Nyenze (Kitui West) then leader of minority died, April 2018 Grace Kipchoim (Baringo South), July 2019 Ken Okoth (Kibra), March 2020 Suleiman Dori (Msambweni), November 2020, Justus Murunga (Matungu), December 2020 James Lusweti (Kabuchai),

There were also on December 2020 Senator Boniface Kabaka (Machakos), February 2021 Francis Waititu (Juja), February 2021 John Oyioka (Bonchari), February 2021 Senator Yusuf Haji (Garissa), August 2021 Senator Victor Prengei (Nominated), March 2021 Paul Koinange (Kiambaa) and May 2022 William Kamoti (Rabai).

The 12th Parliament will go down in history as having altered the country’s debt ceiling twice in less than three years to allow the government room to borrow.


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