Bipartisan talks: Azimio and Kenya Kwanza set ball rolling, agree on issues of discussion

Members of the Bipartisan Dialogue Committee at Bomas of Kenya on Wednesday 10th May 2023. [Dennish Ochieng, Standard]

The Azimio and Kenya Kwanza camps have agreed on preliminary list of issues for discussion at the bipartisan talks.

Speaking after a day-long meeting at Bomas of Kenya, the Bipartsan Dialogue Committee co-chair and Rarieda MP Otiende Amollo listed five issues from the Azimio side.

They are;

  1. Cost of living
  2. Audit of 2022 presidential elections results
  3. Restructuring and reconstitution of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and related matters
  4. Measures to prevent interference with political parties
  5. Outstanding constitutional matters; governance issues, effective checks and balances, the question of boundaries delimitation.

"In the context of it, we have discussed the question of time. You will remember that we in Azimio had given a timeframe of 30 days, our colleagues in Kenya Kwanza had given a timeframe of 90 days. We have agreed to constrain that timeframe to 60 days. But within those 60 days, we have agreed that the more urgent issues will need to have been dealt with within 30 days," said Otiende.

Co-chair and Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale enumerated the Kenya Kwanza camp has also listed its preliminary list of issues.

They are;

  1. Reconstitution of IEBC Commissioners selection panel
  2. The two-thirds gender rule, the entrenchment of National Government Constituency Development Fund (NG-CDF), National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF) and Senate oversight funds in the constitution.
  3. Creation of office of Leader of Official Opposition
  4. Resolving insecurity problems, including banditry and urban gangs and proposing measures to deal with impunity on the part of those who should bear responsibility.
  5. Legal framework to give effect to Article 37 of the CoK, regulate conduct and assign responsibilities to different parties, including organizers of demonstrations.
  6. Electoral reforms to ensure closure of electoral outcomes for post-election peace and national stability, including measures to forestall a repeat of the events of 15th August 2022 at the Bomas results declaration crisis.
  7. Review legal, policy and administrative safeguards to protect government and state institutions from state capture.

On the issue of Jubilee party, Otiende said the matter will be dealt with differently.

"We received a letter from Jubilee party protesting the removal of Adan Keynan and indicating that they need that matter addressed and gave notice that they shall be going to court. We agreed that the question of constitution of respective teams is not for this team to discuss. That is for the Parliamentary Group and the respective coalitions.

In any event we took the position that Jubilee party still being part of Azimio, any issue they have to raise they'd have to raise within the Azimio coalition, not to this bi-partisan team. If the choice to go to court as threatened is raised then we will deal with that matter when it comes." Said Otiende.

The deliberations will continue on Thursday 11th May from 10am.