Why Parliament Could be Dissolved in 2020

LSK President Nelson Havi speaking a forum in 2019
  • Parliament faces early dissolution depending on the outcome of a petition filed by the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) mentioned before the Chief Justice on Thursday, July 30.

    LSK had filed a petition on Friday, July 17 with Chief Justice David Maraga calling for the dissolution of Parliament over the failure to implement the two-thirds gender rule.

    Maraga directed that the Speaker of the National Assembly Justin Muturi and his Senate counterpart Ken Lusaka file their responses on the matter within 14 days of being served.

    According to LSK President Nelson Havi who addressed a press conference on Thursday, July 30, the push to dissolve Parliament was supported by other actors frustrated by the institution’s failure to adhere to the Constitution.

    LSK President Nelson Havi speaking a forum in 2019

    “The Honorable CJ indicated in the Petitioners presence that the Speakers of the National Assembly and the Senate had earlier on sought time to enable their compliance with the orders of the Court and the Constitution of Kenya.

    “The Honorable Chief Justice indicated that he had not received any communication from the Speakers. He confirmed that the time given to the Speakers had lapsed,” he stated.

    The CJ directed that Attorney General Paul Kihara Kariuki be served with the petition in addition to the two Speakers.

    The petition by LSK was one of six filed by various players seeking dissolution of Parliament over the issue.

    The High Court ordered in March 2017 that Parliament implement Article 31(b) on the gender rule within 30 days, but progress has not been forthcoming.

    Speaking at the LSK press conference, policy expert Daisy Amdany thanked the LSK for taking up the issue as she rallied broad-based support.

    “For the longest time, the issue around the two-thirds gender rule is that it has been seen not so much as a Constitutional issue but as a gender issue, and to that extent it has been ignored because there is a culture of ignoring women,” she stated.

    A section of women leaders have argued that the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) offers a fresh opportunity to push for gender equality and empowerment.

    Watch the press conference below:

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