Gender Bill Sinks Again After Poor MP Turnout
The Two-Thirds gender Bill flopped for the fourth time after the required number of members of parliament did not turn up for voting yesterday. Only 174 MPs showed up causing
The Two-Thirds gender Bill flopped for the fourth time after the required number of members of parliament did not turn up for voting yesterday.
Only 174 MPs showed up causing a deadlock as the Bill could not proceed to the next level. According to the constitution, at least 233 of the 349 MPs, which represents two thirds of the members must be in the House for the Speaker to put the question in motion.
Speaker Justin Muturi was then forced to declare the motion lost due to lack of quorum.
Failure to implement the Bill led to blame games as women MPs, led by Chairperson Women Caucus, Alice Wahome, accused their male counterparts of sabotaging the Bill by not lobbying for it, in and out of the chambers.
Ms. Wahome, especially blamed Majority Leader, Aden Duale for what she termed as a lack of commitment in mobilising his male counterparts to vote.
Kenya Women Parliamentary Association(Kewopa) Chairperson and Kirinyaga Women Representative, Purity Ngirici also expressed her displeasure at the turn of events during a protest outside parliament.
“We are extremely disappointed as women MPs. It was clear from the beginning that the majority leader and the government were not committed,” Ngirici said.
Male MPs, however, have come out to question the commitment of the women MPs to the bill as only 20 women out of the 75 women legislators showed up to vote. The male MPs also cited an apparent lack of commitment from the women legislators after it took the intervention of the Speaker and Majority leader for Kewopa to shelve a trip to the US so that they could vote on the bill.
Failure to pass the bill puts parliament in conflict with the Constitution as anyone can petition to have the parliament dissolved for not enacting a law that was due within the first five years of enacting the constitution in 2010.
The bill, which can now only be reintroduced in the house after six months, was deferred last year after another quorum hitch.