Kenya senators’ fury over globetrotting Speaker and his deputy

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Ekwee EthuroSenators are furious over the frequent absence of Senate Speaker Ekwee Ethuro, his deputy Kembi Gitura and most members of his panel, during important House business.

The Speaker is said to have gone to Paris, France for the high profile climate change conference where he accompanied President Uhuru Kenyatta in the Kenyan delegation.

It was not clear if Mr Ethuro also flew to South Africa with the President, but back home MPs are demanding an explanation why the two are missing in action, yet there are crucial pending issues in Parliament. Senator Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo/Marakwet) and a member of the Speaker’s panel, could not explain the whereabouts of the Speaker and his team.

Temporary speaker Wilfred Machage (Migori) found himself on the receiving end when members demanded to know the whereabouts of the Speaker, his

Before the Paris trip, the Speaker had travelled to Luanda in Angola, then proceeded to Ghana for the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association meeting where he went with his National Assembly counterpart Justin Muturi.

In September, he was also in Geneva, Switzerland for the Inter-parliamentary Union meeting. At the time, Muturi who is expected to fly out of the country today, was in Vienna, Austria for another meeting.

“Is it in order for all the speakers to be out of the country? What takes precedence, is it the House Business or foreign travels?” asked nominated Senator Godliver Omondi.

Murkomen was also not spared the wrath of the women legislators, who complained of being sidelined in conducting House business.

She also took issue with the omission of women in taking up House roles, especially as a temporary speaker.

Omondi raised the issue earlier in the week when she asked temporary speaker Machage why female senators were not getting opportunities to chair parliamentary sessions.

Machage has admitted that Senator Omondi’s concern were legitimate but they can only be effectively responded by the powers that be.

To cover for the Speaker’s absence, this week Murkomen, moved a procedural motion to have Senator Stephen Sang (Nandi) a non-member of the committee, chair the Thursday morning special session.

-.standardmedia.co.ke

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