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TRANS-NZOIA COUNTY DIALOGUE ON MEDIATION

PRESS STATEMENT

Preamble
The Trans-Nzoia County Dialogue Forum as part of the Religious Leaders of Kenya, have held a County Dialogue forum on mediation today Wednesday 13th March 2024 at the Church Of God Police line Mitume. We reflected from Jeremiah 13: 1 – 12 urging members “to listen and hearken to the word of God or we will perish as a nation”

The Trans-Nzoia County Dialogue forum brought together delegates from religious groups and representatives of KCCB, NCCK, SUPKEM Youth, Women, and Media, in Trans-Nzoia, to deliberate on National Dialogue Committee recommendations and proposes as endorsed in this Press Statement.

Our Point of Reference: As religious leaders, we commend the National Dialogue Committee for the outstanding work it has done to ensure that Kenya still remains as one Country. However, we are concerned with some of the issues as recommended by the National Dialogue Committee that has given its report to the two principals of Kenya Kwanza Hi Excellency Dr Ruto and Azimio Hon Raila Odinga. We are aware that once the report is tabled in both houses laws will be put in place to operationalize what was agreed some of which might require a referendum causing major changes in our constitution.

Our Commitment
Having thoroughly deliberated on the resolutions as proposed by the National Dialogue Committee we commit to ensuring that peace prevails in the country following the report of the National Dialogue Committee.

Our Outcomes
The Trans-Nzoia County Dialogue Consultative Forum wishes to respond as follows to the five agenda recommendations by the National Dialogue Committee.

On Outstanding Constitutional Matters –The government ensures that parliament passes laws to ensure the realization of the rights under article 43 of the constitution for these are basic rights for all Kenyans. The government to come up with measures to ensure that the cost of living is further brought down in Kenya. This is especially hurting the vulnerable and poor members of our society. Need to relook into taxes for the Mwananchi is overburdened. Both governments to fight Corruption at all levels and eliminate nepotism.

On Implementation of the 2/3rd gender rule, we feel that this should be progressive as it is. The creation of more seats is increasing the wage bill which is already a heavy burden on Kenyans. There should be no ethnic biases, nepotism, or bribery in public appointments. Inclusivity should be seen working and taking center stage. The parliament should provide adequate checks and balances as provided for by the constitution.

On Electoral Justice and Related Matters, we support restructuring and reconstitution of the IEBC and increase the number from 7 to 9 due to the weighty election work keeping in mind that the population has increased. However, we propose that in the commission there should be a representative from NCCK for it’s an umbrella of religious groups. On the creation of counties, we feel that this will be an extra burden to the exchequer and yet even present counties are not getting enough funds.

On Audit of the 2022 presidential election, we recommend that an audit of the past election should not be conducted. This will open old wounds, mistrust, and hatred among Kenyans. What is important is to ensure improvement in the way we will hold our next general election by putting structures, laws, and competent personnel to ensure credible elections.

On Entrenching Funds into the Constitution the two proposed funds should be entrenched (The national government constituencies’ development fund and the National Government affirmative action fund). However, the Senate oversight fund should be scrubbed. That is an extra burden to Kenyans.
On the Establishment and Entrenchment of State Offices, we agree that the office of the leader of the official opposition is to be created. However, the office of the prime minister is to be given to the opposition side so as to act as checks and balances to the government.

On Fidelity to Political Parties/ Coalitions and The Law on Multiparty, Democracy-Preventing interference with political parties/ coalitions, we support the creation of an independent Regulatory body to look into issues of political parties. The political registrar’s body is more of a government agency hence always controlled by the executive. However, we recommend a representative from the NCCK to be nominated to the body. Political parties to be allowed to form coalitions before or after the elections. This is healthy for multipartism and provides strength for parties. However, party hopping should not be allowed at all costs to bring discipline to political parties. Once one defects, that seat should be declared vacant.

CONCLUSION:

We thank all the participants of the county dialogue mediation group and partners for their wisdom in availing such a platform.
It is a good opportunity for us, the Religious Leaders, to come together with other key sectors and stakeholders within the County in order to dialogue and chart our own course towards the peace and prosperity of our beloved Country and County of Trans-Nzoia.

We hereby bind ourselves to the use of this County Dialogue Forum with integrity and sound thought for the collective betterment of our well-being as representatives of diverse Communities and interest groups in Trans-Nzoia County, and we as the people’s spiritual leaders, commit to remain faithful to our God, who has called us all to be his stewards and overseers over his people.

Long live our County, long live Kenya!

To God be the Glory!

Signed on the 13th of March, 2024 by:

Rev. Aggrey Olumola
Chairman of NCCK Trans-Nzoia Coordinating Committee

July 2024
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