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Mzalendo Vox Pop: "Remember We Pay You!"

Posted by on 20th October 2010

Categories: CDF Members of Parliament MP Participation Vox Pop

This interview was done with a young constituent from Kasarani, he’s 22 years old and has never voted, but is clear about what he expects from his MP.

You can find out more about Kasarani constituency at this pretty decent website that’s been set up by the current MP.

Mzalendo Vox Pop: James from Makueni Constituency

Posted by on 19th October 2010

Categories: MP Participation MP Profile Vox Pop

James is a constituent of Makueni constituency, his MP is Peter Kiilu

On his MP’s performance: As I write this, am quite disillusioned
with the MP’s style of serving the constituents.  There is discrimination in resources allocation; nepotism in bursary allocation; no CDF offices in the constituency; and the MP does not hold any public barazas.   In short he has not been effective in any way.
My message to my MP: The only major thing I can communicate to him is that he needs to focus on the constituency’s development.  I would also like to remind him that we (constituents) still remain his employer.

Lest we Forget…

Posted by on 14th October 2010

Categories: 2007 Elections MP Participation

By Mzalendo contributor Moreen Majiwa A barrister by training Moreen is currently a Programme Associate in the Collaborative Initiative Programme at Urgent Action Fund-Africa.

Image by Gathara

As it becomes ever more evident that Kenya has date with ICC, headlines concerning the matter have dominated the dailies.  Promises by the President and PM to cooperate fully with the International Criminal Court have given way to protests, and mixed messages from government officials vis–a–vis the ICC’s intervention.

The legality of the ICC’s intervention has been questioned on grounds of infringement of sovereignty e.g. the case brought by Joseph Gathungu.  In addition, Central Kenya Parliamentary Group Chairman Ephraim Maina and MPs Jamleck Kamau, Simon Mbugua, Kareke Mbiuki and Ferdinand Waititu have accused ICC of using a report that targets the Kikuyu community in its investigations.

Meanwhile, the Minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs  Hon. Mutula Kilonzo continues protest against ICC intervention citing the availability of local option to prosecute perpetrators of the 2007/2008 post-election violence but has since clarified that he is not opposed to the ICC intervention.

In an environment in which the government’s stance on ICC is at best vague one cannot help but wonder if the word cooperation has taken on a meaning opposite to its traditional one. It is important that we avoid being dragged into the political circus and steer clear of the government’s flip flopping on its support/lack of support for the ICC intervention.

Lest we forget the normal Kenyan was the worst affected by the post election violence of 2007/2008. We cannot afford to forget the killing of more than 1,000 people, the displacement of over 300,000, some of who are still living in displacement camps, the callous brutality of the security forces, extra-judicial kills and disappearances, and the publicly raped women. We need to keep this clearly at the fore of our collective conscience as Kenyans. Only then we can decipher what we are told from what is really happening and distinguish fact from conjecture to determine the true intent behind our MPs protests to ICC intervention, particularly in light of the failure to institute a credible, independent local process to bring the perpetrators of the 2007/2008 violence to book.

Though much has been said about the nature of ICC intervention and its bias the processes by which ICC takes on a case is clearly outlined in the Rome statute which Kenya has signed, ratified and domesticated and which is now law by virtue of the new constitution. In cases of sufficient gravity, and many would be hard pressed to make the argument that the post election violence was not sufficiently grave the ICC will only intervene if the country in question, in this case Kenya  is unwilling or unable to genuinely carry out the investigate or prosecution. Unwillingness is characterised by the initiation of proceedings created for the purpose of shielding the person (s) concerned from criminal responsibility or where proceedings are improperly delayed or conducted in a manner that is not consistent with the intention to bring the person/persons concerned to justice. Inability speaks to the lack of institutional capacity or lack of a credible independent national judicial system capable of prosecuting perpetrators.

From the failure and lack of active government support for national processes one can only draw the   conclusion that the government is either unwilling or unable to carry out investigations or prosecutions, or both. Of the local processes the Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) has been plagued by scandals since its inception and lacks both credibility and popular legitimacy. Very few know about how or where the TJRC is carrying out its mandate and for what is supposed to be a public truth telling and healing exercise the TJRC seems pretty secretive. But of even more note is that fact that the TJRC cannot to prosecute any of the perpetrators and as body with no prosecutorial powers its ability to bring persons concerned to justice is called into question. Under scrutiny the Special Tribunal option fares worse. The issue of the formation of a special tribunal to try suspected perpetrators was strongly resisted. Only after considerable pressure from NGOs and the international community, repeated threats by Kofi Annan to hand over the famous Waki envelope to the ICC, and impending ICC intervention were bills for the formation of a special tribunal tabled before parliament by Imenti Central MP Gitobu Imanyara and Former Minister of Justice  and Constitutional Affairs and MP for Gichugu Martha Karua. Both bills were rejected. But one questions the motives of a special tribunal borne out of not the desire of our leaders to see justice done, but under intense national and international pressure.

However more important than the wrangles in the government over whether to cooperate with and support ICC in its investigations are the wishes of the Kenyan citizenry. Polls have shown that a majority of Kenyans, 54%, back the ICC intervention. It is up to us to ensure that the government’s public policy falls in line with our public opinion and not the other way round. It is imperative that those responsible for the crimes committed during following the 2007/2008 elections be brought to justice. The matter of justice is crucial to ending the culture impunity, ensuring accountability as well as preventing a recurrence of the violence come 2012. Seeing as a credible and independent local process for trying the perpetrators of the post election violence is yet to materialise the ICC seems our best option.

Mzalendo Q&A with MP Dr. Wilbur Ottichilo of Emuhaya

Posted by on 7th October 2010

Categories: CDF Constituency News Members of Parliament MP Participation MP Profile

MP Wilbur Ottichilo of Emuhaya constituency recently agreed to respond to questions posed by Mzalendo about his activities and his constituency. We welcome his willingness to engage and if you are a MP who is interested in doing the same, please email us – info-at-mzalendo-dot-com

What made you leave your role as Director General for Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD), an agency of United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and run for Parliament?

I wanted to offer new people centered leadership in my constituency that would focus on socio-economic development through participatory process that aims to empower the communities to formulate and implement their own development agenda. In brief, my goal was to empower people to take their own development destiny in their own hands.

In my career which spans over 30 years, I had held various senior managerial and leadership positions which exposed me to various leadership and development challenges and in the process I gained a lot of experience in modern and democratic approaches to leadership and management. I therefore aspired to use this vast experience to spearhead development agenda in my constituency which has remained poor since independence due to poor leadership which focused on politics of divide, impoverish and rule. My wish was to reverse this trend.

Being a Natural Resource and Environmental Scientist, I had throughout my career written numerous documents and reports where I made numerous policy recommendations for implementation by my government but none of them was implemented because there were no members of parliament who were interested in enacting policies and laws related to natural resource management and environment. I therefore decided that I go to parliament myself to articulate these issues- particularly those that concern science, technology and innovation. In my two years stint in parliament, I have played a key role in pushing for the enactment of National Land Use Policy and Biosafety Law. I have also fielded numerous questions concerning the conservation of our resources- particularly forests, lakes and wildlife. I was also involved in the preparation of Africa’s Position on Climate Change which was presented during the World Climate Summit in Copenhagen in December 2009. Currently I am working in collaboration with various civic societies to prepare a Climate Change Bill which I intend to table in parliament before the end of the year. I am also working on motions on space and Geo-Information Policies.

What Parliamentary Committee(s) have you served on since you became a Member of Parliament? How would you describe your experience on Committees so far?

I serve on two committees: Education, Science and Technology and Transport, Housing and Public Works. My experience on these committees is that they are very important in addressing national issues which cannot be dealt with exhaustively on the floor of the house. It is actually in these committees that the key oversight business of the parliament is transacted. My concern is that these committees lack experienced and seasoned technical support from parliament. Majority of the staff are less experienced and are also involved in numerous parliamentary duties. Also these committees spent more time investigating various issues that arise in their respective sectors. Less effort is devoted to policy issues! Lastly it is sad that the selection of members to different committees is not necessarily based on their expertise and experience in the respectively sectors and as such significant number of members do not take these committees very seriously!

Apart from these Committees, I am also a member of Pan-African Parliamentarian Association on Renewable Energy and Climate Change. The association focuses on issues of renewable energy and climate change in Africa. I also participate in numerous Ad-hoc meetings and committees that address specific parliamentary issues- particularly on education, science and technology and climate change.

Tell us a bit about your constituency. Emuhaya is the second largest single constituency in Western Kenya. Insecurity, poor infrastructure, and youth unemployment are major challenges for your constituents. How have you addressed these challenges as an MP?

Details concerning my constituency- Emuhaya are given on our website: www.emuhaya.co.ke. In brief my constituency which is also a district is in Vihiga County in Western part of Kenya. The constituency has an area of about 174 km2 and has a population of over 230,000, with an average density of about 1500 people (highest rural density in the country and world) per square kilometer. The average land parcel per household (average of six people) is 0.25ha.The main form of livelihood is through subsistence farming of maize and beans. The poverty level is quite high- about 65% and majority of the population are the youth- 76%.

The challenges my constituency faces are poor infrastructure, declining education standards, poor health care, unemployment and ever increasing population. To address these challenges, I initially embarked on the preparation of the first ever Strategic Plan (2008-2018) to be prepared in the constituency in a participatory manner. The Plan preparation process involved most of the key elected leaders, opinion leaders, public administration, sectoral technical officers and the religious leaders. The Plan was completed and officially launched at Bunyore Girls’ High School on 27th December 2008. For details regarding the Plan, see our website. Since the launching of the plan, I have devoted my time and energies to its implementation. For the achievements achieved in each sector to date, please check at the website. Overall I am very happy with the implementation of the plan and we expect to implement more than 70% of the plan by the end of my term- in 2012.

My strategy for bringing accelerated socio-economic development in my constituency has been to work directly with people. First I have had to change their mindset through capacity building that development is the responsibility of the government and that the M.P. is the mother and father of the constituency and is responsible for every development initiative. I had to encourage them to be responsible for their own development by empowering them to participate in the formulation and implementation of their own development activities. Our development motto is: We leave idle talking and take action to better our lives- “Khurule Mumang’ana khutsie mbikhole.”

You have engaged in various activities using ICT to foster development. Can you describe the constituency mapping initiative you undertook in your constituency? How successful was it? What challenges did you face in implementing it? Is there a link where the public can access the results of the initiative?

ICT is the engine of development in the 21st Century and information if important and crucial for rational planning and management of resources. Therefore one of my goals on election as M.P. was to create essential database on my constituency to form the base or foundation of development planning. I also set out to promote ICT awareness and training for our youth in our schools and for the ordinary people. I have been able to partly achieve this through my own personal initiative. Through my own-funding I have been able to establish two ICT training clinics for our youth in the constituency. We have also introduced computer training in a number of our secondary schools. I have been able to achieve this through a community based CBO known as Bunyore Community Development Organization (BUCODEO). For details please check on our website.

Being a geo-information and satellite technology specialist, I have also established a GIS database for the constituency based on most recent satellite imagery. We use this database for planning. Since the GIS technology is computer-based and most of my people cannot access to the same or have no training in the same, I have prepared simple and essential maps that are commonly referred to and availed then at the website for general use. I am also in the process of preparing an atlas with essential maps and statistics that will be available soon in hard copies.

Can you describe ways in which you directly engage with your citizens when not in Parliament e.g. visits to your constituency etc.?

The key complain and concern of my constituents when I was campaigning was that the previous M.Ps rarely visited the constituency once elected and when they did, it was a technical appearance where a few lucky people were given some money in form of a bribe to continue popularizing the M.P. and dealing ruthlessly with anybody who dared criticize the M.P. I therefore resolved that if elected I will spend all my time away from parliament in my constituency. This is what I am doing to date. Virtually all weekends and holidays I am in the constituency. While in the constituency I visit development projects, I visit schools and talk to students, I attend major social functions including funerals, I hold meetings with various key stakeholders and spare time for people to meet me in my local office to greet me and discuss with me on various personal or community issues.

If Emuhaya constituents have complaints or reports about the use of CDF funds, where’s the best place to direct them?

CDF funds are very crucial for the development of our constituency. These are funds that are availed to us by government to initiate and implement community based projects and activities. To effectively and efficiently make use of these funds the communities have been empowered through capacity building to formulate and implement their own projects while the CDFC monitors and evaluates their implementation. We operate in a transparent manner and we announce in a local newsletter produced by my office on how the money received has been allocated to different projects and give implementation status of each project. If there is any misappropriation of funds, it occurs at the project implementation level and in this case the community leaders responsible for the project are held responsible. When we initially started giving money to the communities to implement their own projects we had several reports and observation of poor use of the resources given. But through our intensified project monitoring and evaluation, the cases of poor resource utilization have drastically reduced. Also any misappropriation of any CDF funds by any project is usually reported to us by the local community and we immediately take the necessary measures. Thus over time we are now witnessing increasing accountability on how CDF funds are utilized.

For details on how we have utilized our CDF funds in the last two years I have been in parliament please check on our website. Overall personally I am happy and satisfied that we have used our funds very prudently and the socio-economic impact is evident of the ground. We had made main roads in the constituency all weather and motorable. We have drastically improved our health care system. We have renovated numerous school buildings and constructed classrooms and we have embarked on a very ambitious program to improve academic performance of our schools. Lastly our security has greatly been enhanced through establishment of security posts- manned by Administrative Police in all main market areas.

After your election you set up a website for Emuhaya. How important do you think it is for a constituency to have a web presence? When it was active, did the website help you engage with your constituents and other stakeholders?

The goal of having a website for our constituency is to let the people from my constituency-particularly in the Diaspora to be inform on continuous basis on what development initiatives we are undertaking in our constituency and to afford them a direct opportunity to provide their views and recommendations on what strategies we should adopt to fast-track development in Emuhaya in all sectors. We are also using the website to solicit for financial support for the implementation of various project proposals we have prepared and avail fundamental information on Emuhaya for use by interested parties including researchers.

To date the website has been visited by numerous people in and outside Kenya. We have received a lot of compliments and recommendations on the same. Through the website we have been able to get in touch with various professionals from Emuhaya who are in U.S.A. and Europe among other places. In conclusion we are proud about our website and the role is playing in highlighting our development activities in Emuhaya.

What has been the most challenging aspect of being a MP to date? The most rewarding?

Since I become the M.P. I have and continue to face numerous challenges. Among the challenges I initially faced were:

* The culture of giving of money and cooking food for all manner of people
* The expectation that you can solve personal problems of all your constituents
* High financial and job rewards expectations from my supporters
* Pressure from my supporters to alienate and ignore all those who did not support me or opposed me in election campaign
* The fact that people would be unhappy with me if I told them the true on any issue or on their requests or recommendations. Somehow people want to be given hope through flattery and promising them what you know will not happen!
* Unfair and negative criticism and hatred.
* Lack of transparency and accountability among some of my supporters
* The culture of sycophancy where people praise you unnecessarily and don’t tell you the truth!

Over time I have learnt through experience on how to handle the above challenges but one thing I have vowed not to compromise on is to tell lies (dishonest) or be sucked into corruption tendencies or deals. I have remained steadfast, honest and down to earth and committed. Lastly the most rewarding achievement to date is that the people of Emuhaya are fast discarding their culture of begging and expecting handouts and are now striving to make a living through their own struggle. People from all backgrounds now appreciate my efforts to socio-economically transform the community and are proud of me. This is what is giving more energy and determination to work even harder for my people of Emuhaya.

Mzalendo Video Vox Pop Series: Makadara Constituency

Posted by on 24th September 2010

Categories: Citizen Engagement Constituency News MP Participation Vox Pop

Mzalendo in partnership with the Kuweni Serious team will be traveling around various constituencies to get a sense of how Kenyan voters feel about their MP, about issues facing their constituency, and about solutions they would like to see in place. We welcome your feedback.

This video was filmed in Makadara  before the recent  by-election which Gideon Mbuvi won.

The immediate former MP is Dickson Wathika.  For more about Makadara constituency see their constituency website.

Unpacking the Akiwumi Commission report

Posted by on 20th August 2010

Categories: Members of Parliament MP Participation News

A few weeks ago, we linked to the full Akiwumi report, which provides full details about the proposals to raise MP’s salaries and benefits.

Now that the referendum dust has settled, we think it’s important to shift focus back to critical issues related to our MPs and the Akiwumi report is one of them.   This post is a focus on some key points in the report that stand out to us .

  • There were only 295 oral submissions received by the commission and 70 written ones.   For a nation that has been up in arms regarding the Akiwumi Commission’s proposals, one has to wonder why not more of us voiced our opinions before the Commission when we had an opportunity to?   As we often say, political accountability also includes us as Kenyan voters (notable absence from most civil society groups, and labour unions as well)
  • Some of the benefits recommended include:
    • Kshs 10,000,000 in patient cover.
    • Maternity of Kshs 500,000 per family.
    • Personal accident cover of Kshs 10,622,000 per MP
    • “decent burials” for MPs
    • Car allowance raised to Kshs 95,000 per month
    • Severance allowance of Kshs 300,000 for each year of service
  • Retirement benefits for Prime Minister and VP:
    • one vehicle of their choice not exceeding 1800cc
    • one four-wheel drive of their choice not exceeding 3000cc
    • fuel allowance of Kshs 50,000 per month
    • vehicles will be maintained at govt’s cost and be replaced every 4 years.
    • full medical cover for self, spouse and children up to 18 years to include overseas treatment.
    • a PA, housekeeper, cook, gardener, two security officers, one secretary, one cleaner, and two drivers
    • diplomatic passports for them and spouses
  • The Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) which aids the MPs in their legislative work has a staff of 941.  It is connected to all provincial headquarters via the internet but only 50% of all districts.
  • The PSC goes through 700 reams of paper per week and its research unit has only 10 staffers.
  • The Constituency Office act allows each MP to have a constituency office, a constituency manager and other staff.   Each MP receives Kshs 2.4 million per year to support the office.
  • Several presentations noted on the need to educate constituents about the roles and responsibilities of both MPs and constituents.
  • Report recommends a performance index for MPs – what are they supposed to do? do they do it? are constituents aware of what they are doing / not doing?
  • The tribunal found that “it would be dishonorable to monitor whether MPs have been visiting their constituencies.”
  • Mileage claims submitted by MPs are currently not verified (e.g. in Australia odometers are checked weekly).
  • MPs claim a sitting allowance not just for committees but also for attending Parliament (Kshs 5,000 per sitting)
  • 29 MPs reflected a net salary payment  of Kshs 10,000 and below, following deductions for various loans etc.  81 MPs reflected a net payment of Kshs 100,000 and less.   Clearly some MPs are over-committed.
  • Total MP salary at independence in 1963 was kshs 860, current salary including allowances kshs 851,000 per month.
  • Current transport allowance of Kshs 366,000 was never legally approved.

Employment Bill Debate (16/10/07)

Posted by on 26th October 2007

Categories: MP Participation News

By Mzalendo Blogger

5:30 pm to 7:00 pm

The house switched into committee mode. MP Gor Sungu took the Speaker’s chair as the chairman of the committee, (not the speaker) and the committee members who debated an Employment Bill.


Minister Newton Kulundu
would stand up and struggle to read that “I propose that clause as amended be approved” and the Chair would then ask MP’s to vote – “those in favor say aye, those who opposed say nay.” And this tedious process had to be repeated for all 80 clauses
in the bill, which took over an hour. It appeared boring, but as we have been told, committees are where debate and legislation is done.

Njoki Ndungu proposed 3 amendments to the Bill :
(i) to increase maternity leave of a new mother from two to three months
(ii) to grant new fathers 2 weeks paternity leave to tend to their new children and
(iii) to delete a clause in the current law that requires private employers who pay maternity costs for staff to be reimbursed by the National Social Security Fund (NSSF)

MP’s Ruth Oniango, Wangari Maathai and Charity Ngilu spoke in support of the maternity extension motions and the bills were passed by the
committee.

After 6:00 PM, the Vice President stood to pass a motion to adjourn the house for the day, and allow the committee to continue their debate thereafter. The house was in committee mode and the language used was slightly different. The VP, Labour Minister and even Njoki has several
time be instructed by the Chairman who himself was probably reading on the proper language to use on things like “make report” “I propose that the bill as amended be adopted” and even had to remind people that he was “Mr. Chairman” not “Mr. Speaker”.

So the Mace was put back on the table and the committee became parliament gain for a minute as the VP adjourned the house for the day. Gor Sunguh was back in his seat as MP, as he addressed the temporary Speaker with a report that the committee would continue
after adjournment. Then the Mace was removed and the committee resumed
its debate on the employment bill, with Sunguh back in the Chair.

After the 80 clauses were passed, MP Njoki Ndungu brought forward another amendment this time to grant a mother who adopts a child the same rights a mother of a newborn baby.

This amendment however did not sail as smoothly as the earlier ones.

It was opposed by Minister Kulundu several times, even once saying that a lady could
give birth and adopt a child every other year and always be on leave to which Njoki replied that was a male viewpoint unlikely to happen in real life. VP Moody Awori challenged the definition of an adopted child saying it did not make sense when a school age child was adopted to award
maternity leave to the mother. MP Justin Muturi asked for a definition of duties of a parent to an adopted child. MP Omingo Magara challenged the wording of the bill that gave mothers, and not fathers, rights to which Njoki replied that it was the current laws that did not recognize father rights to adopt

The amendment was awkwardly worded and Njoki kept amending the amendment – changing “child” to “infant”, deleting “duties”, but even her allies like Ruth Oniango could not fix it. At one time it appears the amendment had passed, but MP Magara said that the ‘final’
amendment had not been read out, and when it was, the amendment was
voted down by MP’s. It was later confirmed that the amendment did pass.

MP Julia Ojiambo stood to add another amendment called ‘gender action’ should proceeded to read out a 5 minute summary of what the Bill hoped to do which was in essence to require that the government balance out
by giving women 30% of employment in public sector. This also led to a lot of debate

Minister Martha Karua stood to support the motion saying it would out into the laws what it no the government position that 30% of public service jobs be set aside for women.

Chairman Sunguh asked that MP’s carefully analyze the amendment since the definition in the amendment was any organization that received public funds, including the parliament – and if that was workable or they would end up in industrial court forever.

Minister Kulundu said that the matter should be addressed to the Minister for Public Service who was present. Minister for Public Service Akaranga added that such an amendment should be directed to the public service reform bill being drawn up by
his ministry to be presented later (even in the next parliament). MP Justin Muturi argued that this would be regulated by a board which was not even in existence and seriously would offer tax breaks to private companies for complying with the 30% law.

Debate was still going on up to 7:00 PM, but the amendment appeared doomed

Week in Parliament: Aug 27-Aug 31

Posted by on 3rd September 2007

Categories: MP Participation News

By Francis Mureithi

During the week, election fever continued to paralyze Parliament sessions with questions being dropped for lack of MPs to float them and ministers to respond. For instance on Wednesday August 29, 2007, during the morning session, no question listed in the Order Paper was tackled as either the questioners were absent or ministers.
Deputy House Speaker David Musila said he lacked words to express his disappointment over the members’ performance while Vice President Moody Awori, who is also the leader of government business, said also lacked words to express his displeasure.

This is barely two weeks after members shot down an adjournment motion moved by Vice President Moody Awori arguing that there was too much before the House and it could not afford to go on recess.

MPs, however, passed a motion that allows for introduction of a Bill aimed at compelling the State to establish a special fund to cater for the orphans in the country. The motion passed paves the way for the introduction of the Orphaned and Vulnerable Children’s Fund Bill to provide for education and psychosocial support, shelter, food and clothing for the affected children.
This will ensure their potential of becoming resourceful and responsible citizens is tapped. The motion was moved by Christine Mango (Narc, Butula) and was supported by both government and opposition MPs.

It is also the week that saw the return of the controversial Media Bill after President Kibaki refused to assent it into law returning it to the House for deletion of an offensive clause. The MPs supported the view that the clause was indeed offensive but they complained, for 45 minutes, about how the media has transgressed against them. The controversial clause stated: “When a story includes unnamed parties who are not disclosed and the same becomes the subject of a legal tussle as to who is meant, then the editor shall be obligated to disclose the identity of the parties referred to.”

In the same week, Parliament, with only 19 members, allowed the ministry of Foreign Affairs to spend Shs 7.9 billion for the 2007/8 financial year. The House rules demand the presence of at least 30 of the 222 members, excluding the one presiding, to constitute a quorum and transact House business.

During the week, MPs emerged disappointed after the debate on the Statute Law (Miscellaneous Amendment) Bill, 2007 was postponed due to a hitch. It is this Bill that MPs are seeking to award themselves KShs 1.5 million severance allowance at the end of the life of the current Parliament.
Unlike while dealing with other matters in the course of the week where lack of quorum dominated, a record of 81 MPs had trooped to marshal support to pass the amendment on their allowances but they trooped out as soon as they realized the debate had been put off. The debate was put off when the Committee on the Administration of Justice and Legal Affairs complained that some crucial amendments they had previously tabled in the House were missing in the Order Paper. After the shelving of the debate, MPs trooped out and the House later rose one hour before time due to quorum hitch with only nine members present.

It is this Statute Law (Miscellaneous Amendment) Bill that will be on the spotlight this week in Parliament. If MPs pass the amendment inserted by Attorney General Amos Wako, each of the 222 legislators will be taking home KShs 1.5 million as severance allowance at the end of the life of the current Parliament. It will translate to KShs 333 million which the taxpayer would be required to cough.

Announcement for North Horr Constituents

Posted by on 29th March 2007

Categories: MP Participation

This information was received from MP Ukur Yatani:

Just to inform constituents that we are holding a medical camp in the constituency between 30th march to 1st April,2007.A group of about 9 doctors mainly surgeons (Alkama included) and other specialist will be attending to diverse health needs of our people. This gesture is only a small bandage in a gapping wound and the solution remains building one well equiped health facility in the region which we are serously looking at.

Secondly, to inform you further that the new Boys Secondary school at maikona has attracted over 40 students most with over 350 marks and we are tempted to have double class straight away.Three classrooms, a dormitory and Principal house have been completed.Any suggestions from you is highly welcomed.

MP Participation on Mzalendo

Posted by on 12th September 2006

Categories: MP Participation

In the aftermath of the recent coverage that we received in the Nation, we have been receiving some off-line inquiries regarding how MPs can participate in Mzalendo e.g. if they want to update their profile.

First, we want to welcome all MP participation in whatever form it takes. Our vision for Mzalendo is to build a resource that is useful to both the representatives and the represented. We are not anti-anyone. In addition, as the election campaign process in Kenya becomes more media and technology savvy, and as Kenyan voters begin to demand more accountability from their leaders, MPs might be interested in establishing and building a web presence. Mzalendo is a great way to do that and we are more than happy to help any MP who wants to reach out to his/her constituents via Mzalendo (all for free!)
So how can you participate as an MP?

1. Send profile updates or constituency news via the contact page.

2. We get emails every week from constituents who are looking to get in touch with their MPs and who would like questions answered by their MPs, if you would like to receive updates about questions that are directed to you, let us know via the contact page.

3. Are you sponsoring a Bill, send us the draft copy via the contact page.

4. Anything else you’d like to see on Mzalendo? Criticism or concerns? Want to get in touch but prefer to stay anonymous? While we prefer to know who you are, we recognize that some MPs might want to have get in touch anonymously for whatever reason (perhaps suspicion about who we are and what our agenda is). You can use an anonymous email address to contact via the contact page.