Parliament: Only a referendum ‘will unlock’ the gender rule stalemate

president uhuru
(From left) President Uhuru Kenyatta meets Parliament Speaker Justin Muturi, Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka and Chief Justice David Maraga

Speaker of the National Assembly Justin Muturi has directed the President to initiate a referendum to solve the issue of two-thirds gender rule.

Speaker Muturi said its inability to pass the two-thirds gender rule, was due to several laws that needed to be amended to effect it.

“Given the current efforts and initiatives to amend the Constitution that are currently underway such as the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), the issue on two-thirds gender rule can be subjected to a referendum in the event the same happens,” he said.

Muturi also cited the costs of implementing the clause as a hinderance to ensuring that the rule is enacted.

“Owing to the cost implications of implementing the two-thirds gender rule through other mechanisms such as nomination and topping up, it is prudent if the matter were to be subjected to the people.”

He scorned the Judiciary and the Executive arms of the government, saying it had turned parliament against Kenyans for not fully enacting the rule.

“To begin, it is the State that is empowered to ensure that two-thirds of members of all elective and appointive positions are not of the same gender,” he said.

Muturi was responding to a letter by Maraga seeking to dissolve parliament over the now controversial two thirds gender rule.

Should Speaker Muturi’s concerns be taken into consideration, the BBI taskforce say they can offer solutions such as suggesting amendments that only allow some positions for women.

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