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Calls for reduction of MPs dominate public hearing in Nyeri

Calls to have the number of MPs drastically reduced dominated Nyeri public participation forum on Amendment Bill 2018 seeking views on change of polls date and implementation of two-thirds gender principle.
Majority of contributors argued that the country was over-represented and thus there was need to drastically slash the numbers to ease pressure on government expenditure and wage bill.
They maintained that it was not economically viable to maintain the huge number of elected representatives, saying the numbers were beyond acceptable global standards.
Former Kieni Councilor, Nderi Mukundi, proposed a reduction of constituencies from 290 to 110 as well as scrapping of Women Representative posts and all nomination seats.
In order to achieve gender parity, Mukundi, proposed that the 110 constituencies elect a female and a male representative with the one garnering more votes becoming the substantive MP and the other supportive.
Maina Mwangi, from Kiganjo Peace Forum, said all nominations seats should be scrapped, as they were not necessary but only a burden to the government expenditure.
He said a nominated candidate is not of much value to citizens as he/she was puppet of the nominator.
Local women leader, Margaret Nyathogora, called on parliament to fast track the implementation of two-thirds gender rule to ensure inclusion of women in leadership positions.
She told the Parliamentary Justice and Legal Affairs Committee panel led by nominated MP, Jennifer Shamalla, that failure to implement the gender rule was undermining the Jubilee government stand of championing for gender equality.
The speakers said it was necessary to push the election date from August to December as it was disrupting crucial activities such as education.
The MP said they were satisfied with the turnout witnessed in the forums as well as the contributions given by Kenyans touching the two amendments as well as other aspects of governance.
By Samuel Waititu

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