Parliament forced to take another recess for lack of committees

Failure to constitute parliamentary committees has taken a toll on the business of the two Houses.

The National Assembly was on Tuesday forced to adjourn again only a day after resuming sittings.

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Legislators had just returned from another break they took last month to participate in campaigns for the repeat presidential election.

November 29

MPs will proceed on a three-week break, starting today, and will resume on November 29, when the leadership of both the Majority and Minority will be expected to form the respective House committees.

National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi revealed the challenges the House was facing in dealing with some of the business it was receiving, as some of it required to be committed for processing by committees that are yet to be constituted.

Mr Muturi told members that his office had received many petitions from Kenyans but could not be worked on since committees had not been formed to handle them.

Also shelved yesterday are regulations developed by State corporations and government entities, and which require the approval of Parliament through the Committee on Delegated Legislation.

“These regulations will now have to remain in limbo since this committee is yet to be constituted,” said Muturi.

This came even as Majority Leader Aden Duale gave a notice of motion to alter the calendar of the National Assembly to introduce a short recess to start after the House’s today business until November 29.

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The House was to sit until December 7 when it was expected to adjourn for the long December recess.

Meanwhile, Muturi told the House that his office had received a letter from the National Super Alliance (NASA), asking to be given until the end of the month to submit names of its leadership list.

When the House was taking the short recess, Muturi had asked NASA to ensure that when MPs resume duty today, it should submit names of Minority Leader, Minority Whip and their respective deputies.

But yesterday, Muturi said he had received communication from the coalition seeking more time.

Leadership line-up

Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka has given NASA two weeks to pick its representatives.

Mr Lusaka rejected a request by the Opposition to be given a month to provide its list and directed that they do so by November 21.

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He asked NASA to fast-track the process, saying failure to furnish his office with the names of senators for the various leadership positions had hampered House business.

Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen said internal NASA fights should not be allowed to derail the business of the Senate.