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Handshake task forces proposes 7-year term for President, PM’s post



The Building Bridges Taskforce has drafted proposals which if adopted will see the President serve a seven-year non-renewable term.

The 14-member panel was initially nominated to advise President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga on how to operationalise the handshake.

Martin Kimani and Paul Mwangi, who head the secretariat, have held meetings with the public and stakeholders to seek ways addressing chronic electoral fraud.

Perennial post-election violence has plagued Kenya since the 1992 General Election.

Also read: Handshake committee gazetted, given a year to present report

The task force wants the Executive restructured and the Parliamentary system re-introduce. The panel has recommended that a President be elected by a college of lawmakers.

It proposes a new government structure that will have a Prime Minister. The team also calls for the IEBC to be devolved and to adopt full electronic voting.

The task force wants constitutional amendments made on the IEBC Act to establish national and regional commissioners that are to be nominated by political parties.

The panel proposes that the Kriegler Report to be fully implemented.

It suggested that the legislative arm be restructured so that the Senate is strengthened as the Upper House.

The task force proposed a reduction in the number of senators and wants positions of nominated senators abolished. 

Read: Building Bridges team asks Kenyans for practical solutions to corruption

 The task force also recommended constitutional changes to reduce the number of counties.

 They proposed 14 regional governments as per Bomas Draft.

 “Create regional assemblies comprising all members of county assemblies in each region. Allocate 45 per cent of the national revenue to devolved governments (13.5 percent to regional governments and 26.5 pe rcent to county governments),” read the proposal.

The task force listed nine issues they said, if addressed, will end tribalism, corruption, impunity and electoral fraud.

 They included: ethnic antagonism and competition, lack of national ethos, inclusivity, devolution.

 Others are divisive elections, safety and security, corruption,shared prosperity and responsibilities and rights.

 The task force also said the issue of historically marginalised groups namely, women, youth, persons with disabilities, minorities, pastoralists and other vulnerable groups be addressed. 

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