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Why 2022 choices of MPs, Senators have far reaching consequences


The 2010 constitution was approved by 67% of Kenyan voters after being subjected to a referendum on 4th August 2010. It was then promulgated on 27th August 2010 in a colorful event attended by thousands of jubilant Kenyans and watched live by millions others.

The promulgation ushered in new institutions in government and the state and it also pronounced itself on the principles of separation of powers and interdependency.

Parliament as it was previously known was divided into two houses; Senate and the National Assembly. The first five years of devolution were spent flexing muscles and in a time consuming contest over which house is more important than the other. Some of these contests found their way to the judiciary at the Supreme court. Some optimists said that these were just teething problems and that in the fullness of time things will be better.

However, debate still raged on over some statements in The national assembly that the senate was “Nyumba ya Wazee” (home for the Elderly), never mind the fact that senate had some of the youngest and most educated legislators. These kind of engagements some legal and others political, though necessary ended up in mediation and some of the issues have never been resolved to date.

Parliament is established under chapter eight of the 2010 constitution. Article 95 gives the role of the National assembly and article 96 gives the role of Senate. We must do a lot of sober soul searching before deciding on who to elect in these positions, because the power to legislate is given directly by the people as prescribed in our constitution under the supremacy clause.

Member of National Assembly

The National assembly is vested with the powers to among others; 
- Approve declaration of war and extension of state of emergency
- reviews the conduct in office of the President, the Deputy President and other State officers and initiates the process of removing them from office
- exercises oversight over state organs
- determines the allocation of national revenue between the levels of government
- appropriates funds for expenditure by the national government and other national State organs
- exercises oversight over national revenue and its expenditure.
- Represents the people and enacts legislation
- deliberates on and resolves issues of concern to the people


The role of senate is explained under article 96 to among other things;

- represent and serve to protect the interest of counties and their goverments.
- participate in the law making function by considering, debating and approving Bills concerning counties
- The Senate determines the allocation of national revenue among counties and performs oversight over national revenue allocated to county governments.
- Participates in the oversight of State officers by considering and determining any resolution to remove the President or Deputy President from office.

the question we must therefore ask is who has the right temperament, conduct, ethics and maturity of character to give the role of declaring war in this country or starting the removal of a sitting president or even stabilize or destabilize the country? Who has the right mindset to offer quality and objective leadership and oversight over state organs and individuals watching over them? 

Kenyans must also look for among others;
- honesty of those that seek to represent them,
- integrity; someone who does what is right even if no one is looking
- respect and dignity; treats others with respect and dignity
- is Rational, realistic, and thoughtful
- educated and knowledgeable on government procedures and regulations
- analytical thinking and listening skills
- logic and reasoning
- thorough and pays attention to details

Kenyans must also look for someone who will actually be attending parliamentary sessions and presenting motions and petitions on behalf of their people, and not just someone who wants to use the position to protect their interest or even loot public resources.

The national assembly is where bills such as finance bills, appropriation bills, budget estimates, international treaties and agreements, among others are tabled and discussed. These are bills touching directly on the people of this republic, and bills that determine on the cost of living and the cost of doing business in Kenya. The national assembly and senate also vets and approve individuals to be appointed in state offices.

Kenyans need to find leaders whose vision is the future of this country and future generations and not politicians whose focus is in the next election. Parliament is a very important and honorable institution to just send anybody just because they are in a popular party. 

Kenyans must stop being co-authors of their own misfortunes. They must identify those wolves in sheep skin, those who wants to hoodwink them into choosing them. 

Kenyans must assess MNAs and Senatorial candidates through the lens of what was written in the Holy bible, “you will know them by their deeds”. 

Pay attention to these people dear Kenyans, they will determine whether your child gets a bursary and how much it will be, they will determine how much comes to your county for service delivery of water, sanitation, food security. They will determine whether your road will be done or whether it will be prioritized. They will determine whether they will hold state officers to account for their omission and commissions. 

They will determine whether the government dispensary in your neighborhood will have the critical drugs and facilities to take care of your sick child. Or whether healthcare policies will work or not.

Kenyans must make a choice on 9th August 2022 to either enjoy peace, affordable healthcare, good governance, political stability, good economic and development policies for the next five years…. Or start complaining and gnashing our teeth from the 10th August 2022 for the next five years. 

Time will tell dear Kenyans… on the kind of choices we make.

Juma Hemedi Mwaniki
MP Thika Town Constituency 2022

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