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November 20, 2018

A loyal opposition is essential to democracy

Leaders from Western Kenya during an opposition meeting at the Bomas of Kenya yesterday/FILE
Leaders from Western Kenya during an opposition meeting at the Bomas of Kenya yesterday/FILE

Since President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition leader Raila Odinga announced a truce, there has been political stability in the country and the economy is improving.

Although the deal is generally good for the country, it has created a shortcoming in Parliament and in the performance of MPs.

Despite the constitutional expectation that the minority party or parties will play a vigorous opposition role, minority MPs, mainly ODM, seem to have abandoned that mandate and now are cheering Jubilee on.

A good government is made better by a robust, objective and consistent opposition.

In a democracy, there is supposed to be room for choice all the way up to the selection of government. This means the legislature itself must provide an opportunity for various views to be heard.

These views should include those from the Jubilee Party and those from the minority side.

A major function of an independent opposition is scrutinising the Executive. Despite the goodwill handshake, opposition MPs need to rise to the occasion and perform their function with diligence.

However, in the recent past some of them have abandoned objectivity and defended those summoned to answer questions before committees. This must end.

 

Quote of the Day: “A person who has not done one half his day’s work by ten o’clock, runs a chance of leaving the other half
undone.”

 

Emily Jane Brontë

The English novelist (Wuthering Heights) was born on July 30, 1818.

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