PRESS STATEMENT BY THE PASTORALISTS PARLIAMENT GROUP (PPG) AND THE FRONTIER COUNTIES DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL (FCDC)ON THE BUILDING BRIDGES INITIATIVE REPORT (BBI)
Governors and MPs United For Pastoralists’ Community and Other Minority Groups In Kenya
Today we are gathered here as the leaders representing more than ten million people residing 15 counties and represented by 109 Members of Parliament. The PPG region constitutes approximately 80% of the landmass of Kenya.
We are here to make a public pronouncement and add our clear voice to the ongoing public debate on the Building Bridges Initiative Report (BBI). As members of the pastoralist community and people’s representatives, we are brought together by the commonality of our interests. We stand together to bring forward our voice and give our irreducible minimums in the BBI Report. The BBI report has excluded our detailed presentations to the taskforce and reduced our citizens’ gains on – equity in resource allocation, representation, gender parity, needs of the Persons With Disabilities, and protection of the community land among others.
We demand our issues form part of the Kenyan conversation and be included in the proposed amendments.
The following are our IRREDUCIBLE MINIMUMS for us to support the BBI:
- Resource Allocation:
- The proposed amendment on Article 203 (1) of the constitution be DELETED and Article 203 of the constitution be retained as it is stipulated in the 2010 constitution.
- Secure and protect the 290 existing constituencies as they are and entrench them in the constitution
- On the proposed additional 70 seats – we demand a distribution that guarantees each of the 47 Counties has at least one slot.
- We oppose the use of party lists in party primaries.
- Retain 47 women representatives in the National Assembly.
- Community land protection: Pastoralism is the most viable land use practice in the drylands and Pastoralists’ land must be recognized by government and policy-makers as a key factor of production and important sector to our national economy and our peoples’ livelihoods.
- Protect land-use policies for pastoral lands for grazing and agriculture
- Protect game reserves and wildlife corridors -land adjacent to parks set aside.
- Health Service Commission:
- The proposal to create the Health Service Commission undermines the gains made by devolution as Health is a devolved function.
- Equalization Fund:
- Increase the sunset clause and restart the 20 year period for the fund from date of commencement of the fund disbursement as for it to achieve original constitutional intent that aimed to equalize infrastructure of marginalized regions
- Propose Senate as an Upper House
- The delegation model of voting must be retained. We reject the proposed deletion of Article 123.
- Senate to approve all constitutional appointments
- Judiciary- Independence of judiciary is paramount to the protection rights of the people of Kenya. We want the Ombudsman proposal be removed. Independence of the judiciary must be protected through the operationalization of the Judiciary Fund.
- IEBC – the independence of the IEBC as an election arbiter is paramount and must be devoid of political party interference.
- Funds be set aside for registration of persons and issuance of National Identity Cards and other crucial documents to make sure all pastoralists of age are registered and can access services as any other citizen without discriminatory vetting.
- Address issues of Human Rights violations
- Guarantee Access to Education as right for the people of North Eastern and ASALS. TSC has withdrawn ALL teachers from North-Eastern counties and no back to school strategies in place, thus putting the future of our children at risk.
- We would like to propose the localisation recruitment of teachers
- Pastoralist livelihood:
- We want the establishment of Livestock Marketing Authority with a capacity of vessels for exporting live animals to competitive markets
In Conclusion, we would like to reiterate that we want to enrich this process so that it is true to its objective of having a cohesive, inclusive, equitable and equal Kenya. The BBI is a proposal to amend the constitution and laws so as to attain the aspirations of the Kenyan people and as such, is not cast in stone.
H.E. Capt. Ali Roba – FCDC Chairman, Governor, Mandera County
Hon. Aden Dualle – MP Patron Pastoralist Parliamentary Group
Hon. Alois Lentoimaga – MP Chairman PPG
Hon. Rehema Dida Jaldesa – MP Sec. Gen. PPG
Hon. Bashir Abdullahi – MP Vice Chairman PPG
H. E. Hon. Josphat Koli Nanok – Governor, Turkana County.