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One Million Signatures Referendum & Kenya Constitution Provisions

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Kenya Constitution with strong pillars  Kenya Constitution with strong pillars

Accusing Jubilee Administration of reversing democratic gains in Kenya Constitution 2010 through: Media Act passed that infringes on freedom of press; National Police Service Act and the National Police Service Commission Act; Land laws aimed at transferring constitutional powers from the National Land Commission to the Executive; Truth Justice & Reconciliation Commission Act; Amending and Mutilating Commission’s Report on historical injustices; and, legislation that denies liberty to Civil Society movements in the country. Based on this background CORD on Saba Saba made 13 resolutions as it launched, demanded and kicked off a 1 million signatures referendum initiative. A constitutional referendum can only be made to amend the constitution. CORD did not state what constitutional amendment they will be proposing.

13 Resolutions      

  1. We launch today OKOA KENYA, a people’s movement to defend our Constitution, support one another in good and bad times, protect the gains we have made in democratic governance, and rededicate ourselves to national unity and peaceful co-existence. 
  2. Demand that the Jubilee administration addresses the escalating cost of living by reviewing the taxation regime; failing which we will boycott the consumption of goods and services whose prices are beyond the reach of the common Mwananchi and commence commercial sanctions against companies which continue to ignore our plight.
  3. Convene an all-inclusive National Referendum Committee (NRC) for the purpose of preparing the people of Kenya for a national referendum on the critical challenges facing our Nation. 
  4. Mandate the National Referendum Committee to ensure the maximum participation of the people of Kenya in the referendum at the County, Sub-County and Ward levels all over Kenya; in formulating the referendum question(s), collecting and collating one million signatures to initiate the referendum. 
  5. Having lost all confidence in the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC); do now demand its immediate disbandment and the establishment of a new electoral body. 
  6. Demand the immediate end to corruption, wasteful spending, reckless borrowing within and by Jubilee Government.  In this regard, we demand that the Jubilee administration immediately cancels the inflated security camera contract irregularly awarded to Safaricom and that Safaricom withdraws from the contracts and subjects itself to competitive bidding, failing which we will commence commercial sanctions on Safaricom and other companies abetting corruption or engaging in monopolistic practices. 
  7. Demand that the Jubilee administration takes immediate steps to withdraw our gallant soldiers from Somalia to join our forces in securing our nation from home. 
  8. Demand that the Jubilee administration takes visible, decisive action to deal with runaway insecurity, including holding the senior security officials accountable for hundreds of Kenyans who have been killed and maimed in the various attacks and conflicts across the country. 
  9. Reject attempts by the Executive through Parliament to bastardise the Report of the Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC Report) and demand the immediate implementation of the original and unadulterated Report. 
  10. Demand that the Jubilee administration immediately addresses the underlying land issues that are at the heart of some of the most enduring historical injustices and conflicts in our society. 
  11. Demand a National Audit and publication by the Public Service Commission of all appointments made in the public service by the Jubilee administration, with full details listing names, ethnic backgrounds and percentages. 
  12. Recognizing that the Jubilee administration has failed to apply national resources equitably across the country, we demand that 40 per centum of the projected ordinary revenue of the current fiscal year be allocated to the County Governments. 
  13. Demand that a National Audit on how resources at the disposal of the National Jubilee administration are applied across the country

Kenya Constitution 2010 on referendum 

255. (1) A proposed amendment to this Constitution shall be enacted in accordance with Article 256 or 257, and approved in accordance with clause (2) by a referendum, if the amendment relates to any of the following matters— (a) the supremacy of this Constitution; (b) the territory of Kenya; (c) the sovereignty of the people;  (d) the national values and principles of governance mentioned in Article 10 (2) (a) to (d); (e) the Bill of Rights; (f) the term of office of the President; (g) the independence of the Judiciary and the commissions and independent offices to which Chapter Fifteen applies; (h) the functions of Parliament; (i) the objects, principles and structure of devolved government; or (j) the provisions of this Chapter. 

(2) A proposed amendment shall be approved by a referendum under clause (1) if— (a) at least twenty per cent of the registered voters in each of at least half of the counties vote in the referendum; and (b) the amendment is supported by a simple majority of the citizens voting in the referendum.

(3) An amendment to this Constitution that does not relate to a matter mentioned in clause (1) shall be enacted either— (a) by Parliament, in accordance with Article 256; or (b) by the people and Parliament, in accordance with Article 257.

256. (1) A Bill to amend this Constitution— (a) may be introduced in either House of Parliament; (b) may not address any other matter apart from consequential amendments to legislation arising from the Bill; (c) shall not be called for second reading in either House within ninety days after the first reading of the Bill in that House; and (d) shall have been passed by Parliament when each House of Parliament has passed the Bill, in both its second and third readings, by not less than two-thirds of all the members of that House.

(2) Parliament shall publicise any Bill to amend this Constitution, and facilitate public discussion about the Bill.

(3) After Parliament passes a Bill to amend this Constitution, the Speakers of the two Houses of Parliament shall jointly submit to the President— (a) the Bill, for assent and publication; and (b) a certificate that the Bill has been passed by Parliament in accordance with this Article.

(4) Subject to clause (5), the President shall assent to the Bill and cause it to be published within thirty days after the Bill is enacted by Parliament.

(5) If a Bill to amend this Constitution proposes an amendment relating to a matter mentioned in Article 255 (1)— (a) the President shall, before assenting to the Bill, request the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission to conduct, within ninety days, a national referendum for approval of the Bill; and (b) within thirty days after the chairperson of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission has certified to the President that the Bill has been approved in accordance with Article 255 (2), the President shall assent to the Bill and cause it to be published.

257. (1) An amendment to this Constitution may be proposed by a popular initiative signed by at least one million registered voters.

(2) A popular initiative for an amendment to this Constitution may be in the form of a general suggestion or a formulated draft Bill.

(3) If a popular initiative is in the form of a general suggestion, the promoters of that popular initiative shall formulate it into a draft Bill.

(4) The promoters of a popular initiative shall deliver the draft Bill and the supporting signatures to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, which shall verify that the initiative is supported by at least one million registered voters.

(5) If the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission is satisfied that the initiative meets the requirements of this Article, the Commission shall submit the draft Bill to each county assembly for consideration within three months after the date it was submitted by the Commission.

(6) If a county assembly approves the draft Bill within three months after the date it was submitted by the Commission, the speaker of the county assembly shall deliver a copy of the draft Bill jointly to the Speakers of the two Houses of Parliament, with a certificate that the county assembly has approved it.

(7) If a draft Bill has been approved by a majority of the county assemblies, it shall be introduced in Parliament without delay.

(8) A Bill under this Article is passed by Parliament if supported by a majority of the members of each House.

(9) If Parliament passes the Bill, it shall be submitted to the President for assent in accordance with Articles 256 (4) and (5).

(10) If either House of Parliament fails to pass the Bill, or the Bill relates to a matter mentioned in 255 (1), the proposed amendment shall be submitted to the people in a referendum.

(11) Article 255 (2) applies, with any necessary modifications, to a referendum under clause (10).

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