7/23/2005

update to post on riots and the constitution

EA standard had more answers to the questions i posed yesterday when reading about the riots. I was about to pick out excerpts but the whole piece seems quite important, so i will put it here.

National referendum is next point of action
By Francis Openda and Allan Kisia

It is clear the country is headed for a referendum after Thursday night’s vote in Parliament.
It will be the first time for the country to conducting a referendum.
A referendum gives citizens the final say on whether what is being given to them is acceptable.
Unlike in the national elections in which voters pick a particular candidate, a referendum is basically a Yes or No vote. Voters have to adopt or reject the Draft Constitution in its entirety.
After the Attorney-General publishes the proposed new constitution, the Constitution of Kenya Review Commission (CKRC) embarks on two months of civic education ahead of the referendum scheduled for November.
To participate, one has to be a registered voter and be in possession of a national identity card.
Within 30 days of the submission of the Bomas Draft, the A-G will publish the proposed constitution that will incorporate proposals made from the consensus building process.
Kenyans will be able to engage in public debate on its contents.
Within 90 days of the publication of Constitutional Bill, the Electoral Commission of Kenya will hold a national referendum on the proposed constitution.
ECK will also conduct civic education. If the majority of Kenyans vote for the constitution, it will be adopted, otherwise it will be considered rejected.
Within 14 days of the referendum, the President will promulgate and publish the new constitution, if it is accepted, and it then comes into force.
While Kanu and LDP have all along demanded that the Bomas Draft be subjected to a referendum without any alteration, the Government has proposed changes first.
While the ECK puts the cost of referendum at a conservative figure of Sh2 billion, independent estimates say it could double.
Added to the Sh4 billion taken by the review, a new constitution could cost Kenyans in excess of Sh6 billion, the most expensive official project.
Kabete MP, Paul Muite a key proponent of the referendum, says subjecting the constitution to a popular vote is the only way to satisfy the public.

John Kamau has an updated blog post, check it out here
To see who voted for or against the review, the standard also does a good job. Link. I am saving the information from this link as it is important to remember who did what for the 2007 elections. Noted that Prof. Anyang Nyongo was among those that voted against the review. So hmm.

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