PUSHES FOR BBI REPORT

Aukot’s push for referendum premature, says MP Wandayi

Wandayi asked Thirdway Alliance leader Ekuru Aukot not to rush with the referendum before including everyone's opinion.

In Summary

• The MP said he will not allow piecemeal amendments to the constitution as the country has no luxury of resources to conduct multiple referendums before the next general elections.

• Wandayi asked Kenyans to be patient and not to be rushed by the Thirdway Alliance's move for a referendum when they don't know what the document entails.

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi addressing residents in Ugenya on Saturday
UNHAPPY: Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi addressing residents in Ugenya on Saturday
Image: By Lameck Baraza

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi has termed the referendum push by the Thirday Alliance as premature and asked the team to wait for the Building Bridges Initiative report.

Wandayi asked Thirdway Alliance leader Ekuru Aukot not to rush with the referendum before including everyone's opinion.

The MP said he will not allow piecemeal amendments to the Constitution as the country has no luxury of resources to conduct multiple referendums before the next general elections.

Wandayi spoke to residents in Ugenya at Sega on Saturday. 

The Ugunja MP urged the Thirdway Alliance to wait for the BBI report so that any amendments to Constitution are done at one go.

"It's only from the BBI report that all Kenyans' views have been incorporated to recommend a referendum on areas they deem fit," Wandayi said.

Wandayi asked Kenyans to be patient and not to be rushed by the Thirdway Alliance's move for a referendum when they don't know what the document entails.

He added that the referendum must have the blessings of all Kenyans unlike what the Thirdway Alliance was fronting.

"The Thirdway Alliance are brushing over issues while leaving out the main issues that are corruption and the 'winner takes it all' electoral system the current Constitution allows," he added.

IEBC  on Thursday verified 1.2 million signatures collected by Aukot's alliance and recommended the referendum process to kick off.

Dubbed Punguza Mizigo initiative, the proposals seek a constitutional amendment to address the bloated wage bill in the country. They submitted the signatures to the IEBC on April 28.

Aukot said a bill detailing the proposals in the amendment process would go to county assemblies for assent.

The team will need approval from at least 24 counties. 

Party secretary general Fredrick Okango affirmed that the Thirdway Alliance had met all the constitutional requirements to push for the popular amendments.

He said that the initiative was in the form of general suggestions, and that is why it was formulated as a draft bill.

But the Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi thinks it is too earlier for the group to push for a referendum.

“We all accept it’s time to change the Constitution and that is why we want to move together without leaving behind anybody’s view on the constitution review,” Wandyi said.

(edited by O. Owino)