Wednesday, September 1, 2010



President Kibaki chairs a past cabinet meeting. The ministers are to discuss the implications of Article 77(2) of the new Constitution which bars State officers from holding positions in political parties before advising the larger Cabinet of its implications. Photo/FILE

President Kibaki chairs a past cabinet meeting. The ministers are to discuss the implications of Article 77(2) of the new Constitution which bars State officers from holding positions in political parties before advising the larger Cabinet of its implications. Photo/FILE

Posted Wednesday, August 25 2010 at 22:33

The fate of ministers and MPs holding positions in political parties will be discussed on Thursday at a meeting of a powerful Cabinet team coordinating the implementation of the new Constitution.

A source in the Cabinet said the team comprising nine ministers will also discuss the provisions barring tainted individuals from holding public offices.

The nine ministers who are all lawyers will discuss the implications of Article 77(2) of the new Constitution which bars State officers from holding positions in political parties before advising the larger Cabinet of its implications.

The meeting comes against the backdrop of pressure on President Kibaki, Prime Minister Raila Odinga, Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka and all ministers and MPs to cease holding positions in their political parties after taking their fresh oaths because their positions are classified as State offices.

The President, the PM, the VP, Cabinet ministers and their assistants are scheduled to take their oaths on Friday afternoon while MPs will take theirs during a special session of Parliament on Saturday.

The nine ministers to attend Thursday’s meeting include Mr Musyoka, Mr James Orengo, Mr Kiraitu Murungi, Mr Mutula Kilonzo, Mr Moses Wetang’ula, Mr Otieno Kajwang’, Mr Amason Kingi, Mr Njeru Githae and Attorney General Amos Wako.

Nine-member team

The source said other members of the Cabinet outside the nine-member team are also free to attend the meeting which will also discuss two Bills crucial to the implementation of the new Constitution.

One of the Bills, the Vetting of Judges and Magistrates Bill 2010 seeks to create the tribunal which will vet members of the Judiciary to determine their fitness to continue holding offices.

The other is the Judicial Service Commission Bill to create an independent Judicial Service Commission. “These two are so important (to the implementation of the new Constitution) that they cannot wait until the formation of the Commission on Implementation,” said the source.

The debate on whether serving members of the Cabinet, including the President and the PM and MPs should continue holding positions in political parties came about at a meeting of a parliamentary committee in Mombasa last weekend.

Former Siakago MP Justin Muturi argued that the new Constitution barred State officers including the President, the PM, ministers and MPs from holding positions in political parties.

The calls have drawn support from Ford Kenya leader Musikari Kombo, Lands assistant minister Bifwoli Wakoli, Kanu secretary-general Nick Salat and PNU spokesman Moses Kuria.

Add a comment (21 comments so far)

  1. Submitted by jokaseda
    Posted August 27, 2010 06:18 AM

    Can you all stop for a moment? You must all understand that this constitution recognizes that this government was constituted specifically unique and so it cannot operate 100% according to the wording of the constitution until after 2012.Alot of what is in the old constitution will be carried on until 2012. As it were there is no position of a PM,but Raila will remain as PM until the coalition government is disbanded in 2012. So please stop your comments about provision of this document until 2012.

  2. Submitted by hedabovewater
    Posted August 26, 2010 11:38 PM

    @SUNBURN look and learn. even a baby learning to walk has to fall... severally... he/she doesnt sit and wait until he has calculated the perfect walking posture then get up and do just that.. he will still fall so be positive and start to look as BELTANRIE5 says for ways out of the maze we are getting into instead of waiting for perfect constitution to drop like manna from heaven

  3. Submitted by BELTANEFIRE5
    Posted August 26, 2010 06:10 PM

    Oh people please let the constituition get started before predicting possible problems Adopt a positive attitude and when problems arise ,which is inevitable in anything new and radical,then sort it out BE POSITIVE say to yourself KENYA HAS TURNED A CORNER ABND IS ON THE WAY TO A BETTER BRIGHTER FUTURE.

  4. Submitted by Sunburn
    Posted August 26, 2010 04:37 PM

    Rathuon, you can deny it all you want and bury your head in the sand but that katiba has serious drafting problems and there will be consequences. The sooner you get over the euphoria and see reality the better.

  5. Submitted by Rathuon
    Posted August 26, 2010 03:39 PM

    sunburn, the lawsuits you are seeing on the horizon will be by the ignorants of the law. Infact they will be the same ignorants who sruggled all along to try and stop the process of making the constitution. They were the NO team and their sympathizers. You sound like one of them.

  6. Submitted by Sunburn
    Posted August 26, 2010 01:55 PM

    Mulosh, i can see many lawsuits coming on the horizon due to the very poor drafting of this katiba. Very unfortunate that people did not listen.

  7. Submitted by mulosh
    Posted August 26, 2010 12:16 PM

    Someone guide me here: how do you cease to be a leader of a party IF that party sponsored you to be president or whatever...surely, you are DEFINATELY a senior leader of that party, which in in itself is a what what this clause all about?

  8. Submitted by Governer
    Posted August 26, 2010 11:10 AM

    State Officers refers to people who have taken oath of office.

  9. Submitted by mbwiria
    Posted August 26, 2010 11:06 AM

    The constitution is very clear that nobody serving in a state office should hold a position in political parties. That is binding unlike this subcommittee (cabinet) which is not recognized by law. Its immature to condemn them, theirs is only to keep the GOK on the know of what legal commissions are doing about the implementation. In my opinion their work is re-reading and informing the government so that its not caught of guard or stray from the dictates of the law which if they do i'll sue the government

  10. Submitted by odhiamboondoro
    Posted August 26, 2010 11:01 AM

    The fate of ministers and MPs holding positions in political parties will be discussed .Give us a break !. Let the constitution interpret itself not the legislature interpreting it.Why must we start on such a sad note ?.

  11. Submitted by kichwasafi
    Posted August 26, 2010 09:32 AM

    I heard a member of the CoE saying on TV the other day that State Officers refers to people appointed as heads of parastatals, ambassadors, etc. Which is which?There's already confusion in interpreting the new Constitution and there's bound to be many such disputes in the future. The problem with the law is that you can interpret it whichever way you want depending on your standpoint.

  12. Submitted by kavukua
    Posted August 26, 2010 09:07 AM

    Obey the Law Honoured women and men of Kenya. Make decisions what you want to hold, either has to go party office or state office!! What are these ministers meeting to discuss, I thought they had read the katiba and were ready for the consequences. Now I believe only the few serious christians had read the katiba thoroughly seeing both the larger good and the few very bad moral articles.

  13. Submitted by YoungHeart
    Posted August 26, 2010 08:39 AM

    krugutt are you one of them? Those tainted, AKA Suspects, should keep clear of public service until cleared because the New Supreme Law states so. I wonder why any right thinking Kenyan would argue for the Tinted when there exists many qualified Kenyans with no stain or blemish

  14. Submitted by mzeemoja
    Posted August 26, 2010 08:15 AM

    The 2nd Republic is about change and be seen to obey the law at first instance. Politicians should not arrogate themselves power of how and when to start obeying the law.

  15. Submitted by Sunburn
    Posted August 26, 2010 07:23 AM

    The new law is very clear; State officers should not hold political party offices, period!! If the Ministers want to change the law, and which they blindly voted for, let them get a million signatures, just like they were asking the church to do! Lets not have hypocrisy and double standards.

  16. Submitted by straightalker
    Posted August 26, 2010 02:04 AM

    Krugutt, Some of the members of that team have been struck off by LSK from the advocate list and from practicing law due to professional misconducts. Its like giving a driver whose license has been revoked keys to a new bus full of passengers. We should not blame anyone if a careless accident occurs.

  17. Submitted by werssylwer
    Posted August 26, 2010 12:40 AM

    The new constitution is here. Question is, will they respect it? Your guess is as good as mine.

  18. Submitted by Thabari
    Posted August 25, 2010 11:47 PM

    Kenyans should resist this rush to draft new laws even before the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution is in place. Only this commission is legally mandated to oversee the drafting of the new legislation in consultation with the AG. As it is, the president is in charge via the sub-cabinet committee which has no legal standing. Slow down and obey the law!

  19. Submitted by tunes2006
    Posted August 25, 2010 11:23 PM

    And now the time for the truth has come!Show leadership Mr President and hon PM.

  20. Submitted by mbuvijmk
    Posted August 25, 2010 10:55 PM

    If they are sincere that the constitutions they voted for was good for all Kenyans, let us see them showing leadership fron the word go!

  21. Submitted by krugutt
    Posted August 25, 2010 10:53 PM

    If any person has not been arrested, arraigned in the court of law and incarcerated for crimes committed, no person or group of persons can pupport to deny any Kenyan an opportunity to serve the country in any capacity simply because he or she has been mentioned or suspected in crime-related activities. The nine cabinet lawyers, now serving on the cabinet-select committee should not arrogate themselves powers that they do not have in barring anybody from serving the government, including their cabinet friends. This committee should not be allowed to be misused and abused by a few involved-in-witch-hunting-and-political gerry-mandering.