President Kibaki on Saturday assented to the National Transport and Safety Authority Act, 2012 and the Prevention of Terrorist Act, 2012.
The National Transport and Safety Authority Act 2012, establishes the National Transport and Safety Authority that will harmonize transport functions currently being discharged by the Transport Licensing Board, the National Road Safety Council, Registrar of Motor Vehicles, the Motor Vehicle Inspection Department and the Road Department of the Ministry of Roads.
The functions of the Authority shall include advising and making recommendations to the Cabinet Secretary for transport on matters relating to road transport and safety, implementing policies relating to road transport and safety, planning, managing and regulating the road transport system and ensuring the provision of safe reliable and efficient road transport services.
In the performance of these functions, the Authority shall, among other responsibilities, register and license motor vehicles, conduct motor vehicle inspections and certification, regulate public service vehicles, advise the Government on national policy with regard to road transport system and develop and implement road safety strategies.
The Authority will also establish a County Transport and Safety Committee in each County to champion road safety and oversee the management and regulation of the road transport system by the Authority at the County level.
The County Committees will also prepare and submit to the Authority such audit reports on safety, reliability and efficiency of the road transport system as the Authority may require from time to time.
The Authority will be managed by a Board comprising of a chairperson who will be appointed by the President, the Principal Secretary in the Ministry responsible for transport, Principal Secretary in the Ministry responsible for finance, the Attorney General and the Inspector General of the National Police Service.
Other members include four persons appointed by the Cabinet Secretary. Two persons appointed by the Cabinet Secretary to represent groups with special interest in the transport industry and a Director General. The chairperson must be a holder of a degree from a University recognized in Kenya.
The Prevention of Terrorist Act, 2012 provides for measures for the detection and prevention of terrorist activities as well as amendment to the Extradition (Commonwealth Countries) Act and the Extradition (Contiguous and Foreign Countries) Act.
The Act outlines acts of terrorism and provides punitive penalties for those who commit terrorist acts. Among others, the Act provides for a term of imprisonment not exceeding thirty years for persons who commit terrorist acts and a life imprisonment for persons who commit terrorist activities which result in the death of other persons.
Those convicted for assisting in the commission of terrorists acts and those found in possession of property intended for the commission of terrorist acts are on conviction liable for a term not exceeding twenty year. The Act also provides stiff penalties for the offences of membership to terrorist groups, recruiting to terrorist groups and training and directing of terrorist groups and persons.
National Examination Council
The Kenya National Examinations Act 2012, which President Kibaki also signed into law, provides for the establishment of the National Examination Council, its powers and the conduct of the national examinations.
The new law empowers Kenya National Examination Council to set and maintain examination standards, conduct public academic, technical and other national examinations within the country at basic and tertiary levels.
The Kenya National Examinations Act criminalizes possession of copies of examination papers by unauthorized persons before or during examination and spells out stiff penalties for leakages and other malpractices.
According to the revised law, individuals who leak examinations to candidates are liable to imprisonment for ten years or a fine of Sh2million.
Section 30 of the Act provides that people who willfully and maliciously damages examination materials or facilities of evidence that could lead to a conviction under the law, commits an offence and is liable upon conviction to serve five years imprisonment and or Sh5million fine.
People inciting disorderly manner or found with offensive weapons near an examination centre with intent to disrupt national examinations through intimidation, assault or obstruction of the candidates and officials commits a crime under the Act and are liable for imprisonment for three years and or a fine of sh. 500,000.
The Act also criminalizes strikes during examinations and bars persons engaged in management, organisation and administration of national examinations from activities that may compromise the exams integrity and security or infringe on the rights of the candidates and officials.