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Senate committee to prioritize key bills of gov’t agenda

The Senate Business Committee (SBC) has promised to prioritise bills that are aligned to the manifesto of the government to streamline the parameters of the government’s projections in terms of legislative agenda.

The committee noted that it will give precedence to bills that are aligned to the prognoses of the manifesto that the government of the day has in place.

Speaking during an induction retreat in Mombasa where the committee had gathered to deliberate and familiarize itself with the mandate and obligations for conducting business in the fourth Senate, Deputy Speaker of the Senate Kathuri Murungi said that they will also look at other bills from private members and work on them but of key priority will be to assert bills in accordance with the governments’ disposition.

Murungi said the first order of business will be to earmark bills from the third Senate that are pending and need finalization in order to comprehensively work on them and bring them back to the house for ratification.

“We will identify and follow up on key pending bills in the previous Senate and hasten their finalization in order to move house business forward and work on new ones,” he said.

This induction comes after an earlier ground breaking and inaugural induction of all senators at which the legislators were accorded a well-deserved and empowering orientation on their new roles and how to discharge them effectively.

On his part, Senate majority leader Aaron Cheruiyot called on the Senate to come up with ways to create a symbiotic relationship with the National Assembly (NA) when it comes to executing legislative functions.

He said that the long standing debate on Article 110 on which bills can come through the senate and which ones cannot, has subdued legislative processes in both houses and that a quick solution should be sought to untangle this stalemate.

He noted that the country draws better value when bills and legislation pass through both houses of parliament as opposed to the push and pull that has by extension stifled legislative processes.

“We are in the process of concluding on what we consider a fair proposal from the Senate on what an out of court consent would be with our sister house,” said Cheruiyot.

He noted that this mitigation attempt was not a matter of convenience but one of conviction that will ultimately mend the existing friction between the legislative arms.

The two-day event stands as a preamble of week-long engagement by the Senate.

It will culminate in the second induction of the legislators to be presided over by Speaker of the Senate Amason Kingi starting Wednesday November, 2, 2022.

By Chari Suche and Andrew Hinga


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