President Uhuru Kenyatta on Thursday, January 13, hosted a new year luncheon for his handshake partner ODM leader Raila Odinga, Senators and Members of Parliament allied to his camp.
Speaking during the luncheon, Uhuru thanked the MPs for passing crucial bills, which he stated, are key to improving governance and service delivery to Kenyans.
These include the Anti-Money Laundering, the NHIF, and the embattled Political Parties (Amendment) Bills.
He also appreciated both MPs and Senators for showing up at the luncheon and he urged them to be responsive during the campaign period.Senators James Orengo (Siaya), Ephraim Maina (Nyeri) and Ole Kina (Narok) at State House Nairobi on Thursday, January 13, 2022.PSCU
“Let me say how wonderful it is to be with you at the beginning of the year and to share a meal. Let me take this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the commitment you've shown especially by those of you from the National Assembly during this holiday period.
“We all know that it was a very difficult holiday period because of the pandemic but you turned out in huge numbers. You left your homes, your families to pass pieces of legislation that are game-changers.
"The passage of the Anti-Money Laundering Bill, for example, will ensure that we are able to continue being part of the international financial system, and to have a respected banking system that can only help improve and mature our economy,” he stated.
He noted that the Political Parties (Amendment) Bill, was passed although with a lot of resistance from allies of his deputy, William Ruto. Uhuru urged Senators to also give the Bill a nod when debates commence.
“The bill on NHIF and the other acts around the health sector will give us the opportunity to give our people that which we promised them - The Universal Healthcare,” he stated.
“And the political parties amendment that we are trying to push through - which some people have tried to demonise as they did with BBI. The Bill is giving us an opportunity to be able to formally work together across political parties in the interest of the nation,” the President explained.
ODM leader Raila Odinga also commended MPs for passing the Political Parties (Amendment) and urged the Senate to emulate the National Assembly for the benefit of all Kenyans.
He further stated that the constitutional making process is a work in progress noting that Kenyans desire laws that will ensure good governance.
“I just want to say, like it has been said before, that law and constitution-making are always work in progress. Even the old age constitution, the democratic constitution of Unites States of America, is still a work in progress, and they have several amendments - the 5th Amendment, the 6th Amendment and others.
“So, really, it is not a crime for somebody to see a wrong in our Constitution or in laws that we need to change. These amendments always make things better.
“They say that a good idea always yields to a better idea, and a better idea would yield to the best idea. So what you are doing is basically trying to improve governance in our country. We really want to thank you very, very sincerely for what you did,” Odinga remarked.
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