A section of elected leaders from the larger Mount Kenya region have vowed to educate and enlighten people from the area on details of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report.
The leaders who are allied to President Uhuru Kenyatta have also said they will involve local community leaders and the clergy in educating the locals.
Speaking after a 3-hour closed door meeting in a Murang’a hotel on Saturday, the leaders including MPs, Senators and Women representatives claimed that they will not let the opportunities brought in by the BBI disappear.
Led by the National Assembly majority leader Amos Kimunya, the legislators said Mount Kenya region stands to benefit more from the proposals contained in the BBI saying they will embark in rigorous public forums to sensitize the people from the central region about the documents.
Their stand comes a few days after Senate majority chief whip and who is also Murang’a senator Irungu Kang’ata wrote to the president claiming that only 20 percent of residents of Mount Kenya region support the BBI.
In a statement read by Kirinyaga senator Charles Kibiru, the leaders lauded locals for appending their signatures in support of the BBI bill and endorsing the proposed political reforms enshrined in the document.
They noted that only 15 elected members of parliament out of 91 are against the BBI report and that the remaining 60 continue to steer the country to a progressive path being charted by the President.
The leaders also formed a team of five members to be led by Kibiru and Maoka Maore that will come up with structures on how to carry out an aggressive campaign of the proposed constitutional reforms. The team will also work with local governors and members of county assemblies in popularizing the BBI in the region.
Kibiru observed that communities from the region always bore the brunt of political violence, hence, they understand the value of peace and stability that were not evident before the infamous handshake between the President and ODM leader Raila Odinga.
He added that BBI is the only way for Mt. Kenya region to realize the promises of democracy, fairness, equity and equality of all citizens that is enshrined in the constitution.
“BBI will also ensure lasting peace and the securing of the region’s political and economic future,” the senator read part of the statement.
The leaders alleged that there are some individuals and those in government who were working day and night to divide the region adding that the door was open for the other leaders who are yet to join the BBI train.
“There has been a massive disinformation campaign and deliberate efforts to bring down the BBI process in Mt Kenya region so as to make it appear unpopular by elements that do not have our interest at heart.
“As the vast majority of elected leaders, we have come together to show our support for BBI as well as the President whose vision is to leave behind a united, peaceful and prosperous country when his term ends,” added the Senator.
The leaders further underscored the BBI saying it will help fight corruption, bring real prosperity and proper empowerment of the youths and not piecemeal personal handouts from leftovers of corruption proceeds.
By Bernard Munyao