Government of Kenya appeals decision against BBI constitutional changes | Uhuru Kenyatta News
Kenya’s High Court ruled last month that constitutional reforms proposed by President Uhuru Kenyatta were illegal.
The government of Kenya formally challenged a ruling by the country’s High Court last month that the constitutional reforms proposed by President Uhuru Kenyatta were illegal.
The sweeping constitutional changes – known as the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) – were rejected by the court on May 14, dealing a heavy blow to Kenyatta and his allies who wanted the amendments to go to a referendum ahead of the elections. next year.
In a formal appeal to court on Wednesday, Solicitor General Kennedy Ogeto said the five-committee panel “erred” in determining that the president did not have the legal authority to conduct such amendments.
The High Court’s finding that Kenyatta could also be sued in a personal capacity for pursuing such an initiative was also incorrect, the government’s top lawyer argued in appeal documents viewed by the AFP news agency. .
The appeals court will begin hearing the case on June 29.
One of the purposes of the BBI’s proposal is to broaden the executive branch in what its supporters have called an attempt to curb cycles of election-related violence in Kenya, an issue blamed on the existing winner-take-all electoral system.
He will create 70 new constituencies, return the role of cabinet ministers to elected members of parliament and create several powerful new positions: a prime minister, two deputies and an official leader of the parliamentary opposition.
The campaign grew out of an alliance forged by Kenyatta and his political enemy Raila Odinga in the aftermath of a contested 2017 male election that exploded into violence.
The BBI was endorsed by parliament and has since dominated Kenyan politics, making headlines as Kenyatta and Odinga have scoured the country rallying support for the initiative, even amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Critics see the move as an attempt to create a prime ministerial post for Kenyatta, who is not allowed to run for a third term in 2022.
His deputy William Ruto – who many planned to succeed Kenyatta in 2022 – opposes the reforms and has been sidelined as the president has formed a political relationship with Odinga.
Some have argued that adopting the reforms would burden a country already struggling with debt, as they would increase parliament’s payroll while creating more opportunities for patronage and corruption.
In a televised speech Tuesday, Kenyatta said the High Court’s opposition to the BBI amounted to an “attempt to stop the will of the people”.