Why Nzamba Kitonga was strongly supporting the BBI and expanded Executive

His passing has shook the country especially at this time when Kenya is at a constitutional moment. Nzamba Kitonga was a strong supporter of the BBI and in November 2019, he said the Uhuru-Raila project gives the country a good opportunity to correct the Naivasha Draft.

He believed the BBI Report is a document that can start a conversation about how to improve the way we conduct our business as a country. A Constitutional Lawyer of high repute, Kitonga was the chair of the Committee of Experts which midwifed the current Constitution in 2010.

” I welcome the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report that was unveiled to the public by President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga.

”It is not a final document, but one which is now on the table for Kenyans to debate, enrich with ideas, and say what they support in the document or not; and what they would want to be added,”’Kitonga told a local daily in November last year.

He believed, being a member of the Committee of Experts that delivered the Constitution, the BBI captured the spirit of the Harmonized Naivasha Draft which had the post of Prime Minister, two deputy prime ministers, Leader of Official Opposition, and also had ministers from both Houses of Parliament.

One of the major things he pointed out in his argument was the composition of the Judicial Service Commission. He was strongly for the restructuring of the entire JSC, saying there was misuse of majority, in terms of appointment or rulings.

”We think those numbers have been used to favour the Judiciary, particularly in the recruitment and promotion of judges. There is a misuse of the majority.

”It is also supposed to be restructured so that we don’t have complaints being brought against judges yet they are the ones who sit.

”During a recent debate at our annual conference, we were thinking of the Ugandan model where retired judges and senior lawyers who are not in active practice sit in the commission. This will enrich the BBI document and deal with the perception that judges are pushing their own cause,” the demised Constitutional lawyer wrote.

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Written by Albert


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