• MPs are concerned that the recommendations are already being implemented yet they are in conflict with pre-existing statutory and constitutional provisions.
• In his ruling, Wetang’ula directed Ichung’wah to convene a meeting with Machogu over the concerns raised and report to the House on October 10, 2023.
Speaker of the National Assembly Moses Wetang’ula has directed Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah to speak with Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu over the implementation of recommendations by the Presidential Working Party on Education Reform.
It followed concerns by MPs that some of the recommendations are already being implemented yet they are in conflict with pre-existing statutory and constitutional provisions.
“The business of law-making is a reserve of lawmakers under Article 109 of the Constitution. As it stands, there is a crisis in the education system with education organs and players existing before the 2010 Constitution intending to seize power in the education sector given these proposals,” Emuhaya’s Omboko Milemba who first raised the issue said.
Among the recommendations he listed as being in conflict with the law is the provision that the Ministry of Education establishes a comprehensive school system where all levels of learning are managed as one institution contrary to part 29 of the Fourth Schedule of the Constitution.
Further, he said the recommendation that the ministry reviews the grades of pre-service teachers and recruit staff for special needs schools jeopardizes the mandate of the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) and that TSC being mandated to hire chaplains and Imams for schools is in direct conflict of Article 9 of the Constitution which separates the state and religion.
“Honourable Speaker, I want to seek your guidance that this matter be handled by the House so that people do not change the Constitution and the Acts of Parliament through the back door,” Milemba said.
Rarieda’s Otiende Amollo echoed the sentiments saying the ministry has already purported to create an implementation committee to implement a policy document that has not crystallised into law in total contravention of Article 95 of the Constitution.
“Nothing should assume the force of law without except as passed by this House. This House is also required by that Article to deliberate and resolve issues of interest to Kenyans,” he said.
“It is within your powers and jurisdiction Mr Speaker to by way of communication to pronounce yourself and say ‘whatever is contained in that document that is purported to be implemented is void ab initio,” he said.
In his ruling, Wetang’ulah directed Ichung’wah to convene a meeting with Machogu over the concerns raised and report to the House on October 10, 2023.
“Majority leader, you will have to engage the minister and I will direct you to bring a comprehensive statement to that issue not this Tuesday, the other Tuesday and nobody, no minister of government can purport to make law or do things that appear to be in the predict that they have made law, because they have no capacity to make any law,” he said.
The Presidential Working Party on Education Reform submitted the report to President William Ruto on August 1, 2023, almost a year since its formation on September 30, 2022.
Ichung’wah agreed with the concerns raised by Milemba saying “anything touching on statutes that can only be changed in line with our Constitution”.
“And therefore honourable speaker, I will pick it up with the minister for education to ensure that no recommendation from the working party that touches on the statute or on the Constitution is implemented without requisite changes to the laws,” he said.
Ainabkoi MP Samwel Chepkonga said the House does not see a situation where people don’t believe in the rule of law.
“There is nobody in this country, however high and mighty they think they are, including the Cabinet Secretary, you cannot implement those recommendations before you bring them in the House,” he said.