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DP Ruto, other leaders react to shock BBI ruling

By Betty Njeru | May 13th 2021
Deputy President William Ruto. [DPPS]

Leaders from across the political divide have reacted to the High Court’s ruling on the nullification of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) process.

A five-judge bench has declared the BBI referendum process unlawful, saying the initiative violated the Constitution of Kenya.

Deputy President William Ruto, who has openly challenged the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020 since its inception expressed gratitude to a higher power, moments after the shocking ruling.

“There is GOD in heaven who loves Kenya immeasurably. May GOD'S name be praised forever,” he tweeted.

Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, also an ally of DP Ruto quoted a past daily that had headlined the deputy president and wrote: “You don’t have to be in the majority for you to do the right thing!”

He added: “When the history of Kenya is properly written, the contribution of Justices Joel Ngugi, George Odunga, Jairus Ngaah, Chacha Mwita, and Teresia Matheka will be written in golden letters.”

Ruto and his allies have been criticising proposals in the report saying Kenyans should be given multiple-choice referendum.

In the more than five-hour ruling on Thursday evening, taking into account the issues raised in the eight cases challenging the BBI process, court ruled that it was more of a presidential task force initiative than it was Wanjiku’s (people-centred).

“The amendment of the Constitution through popular initiative cannot be taken by the government. It is clear that the bill is an initiative of the president,” Justice Jairus Ngaah said.  

Economist David Ndii, who was among a team of five petitioning the BBI process thanked former Chief Justice David Maraga for paving way for a “sagacious and courageous bench”.

In Thursday’s judgment, Court sought to determine 17 questions that arose from the eight petitions challenging the legality of the BBI process.

Some included: Was the President in contravention of the Constitution for claiming authority on BBI? Is it lawful for a Constitutional Amendment Bill to create new constituencies, and whether the Bill falls within the initiatives in Chapter 16 of the Constitution (Articles 255,256 and 257)

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