Senate of the 12th Parliament adjourns sine die
NAIROBI, 22 June – The Senate adjourned sine die (with no set date for resumption) Tuesday, ahead of the August 9th General Elections, as Senators took stock of their legislative performance and recounted their fond memories.
Before the Majority Leader moved the adjournment motion, the Senate approved a motion on the Revised Debt Ceiling for the National Government. 27 Senators voted in favour of varying the Public Debt Ceiling from KES 9 trillion to 10 trillion, with three voting against.
“I hope – in revising the debt ceiling upward and making it possible for Government to borrow more – they will do so responsibly. Because in our nation, financial discipline has always been lacking,” observed Senate Minority Leader Sen James Orengo.
“Although we have been making strides in the area of infrastructure, if we do not manage it well, we will not be able to become a free market economy to guarantee prosperity to the rest of the country.”
Over six sessions, the Senate introduced 75 Bills, of which 20 have been assented to. These laws address various issues affecting the country and, more specifically, strengthen the devolved system of Government.
Petitions and Statements have been another avenue that the Senate capitalized on to address concerns by citizens. 114 out of 145 Petitions received by the Senate were reported on, representing a 78% completion.
There were 229 Statements made in line with Standing Order 47(1), of which 67 were referred to respective standing committees for further consideration. 53 of these were concluded, and where necessary, reports thereon tabled. With respect to Statements under Standing Order 48(1), 573 were sought, out of which 448 were concluded and reported on. This accounts for 78% of the total Statements filed.
In the 12th Parliament, the Senate considered five impeachment Motions in its quasi-judicial role.
“It must be observed that in undertaking our mandate through the impeachment process, the Senate has mediated in conflicts and misunderstandings in the counties. This has ensured that whatever the outcomes of the trial, the ultimate winner was a strengthened devolved structure,” Speaker Kenneth Lusaka told the House in his final Communication.
The Speaker, however, observed that there was need to standardize the procedure applied in considering a Motion for the proposed removal of a President, Deputy President, county governor, a deputy county governor, a cabinet secretary or a county executive committee member.
Another hallmark of the Senate’s legislative work was the consideration and passage of the third basis for revenue allocation among county governments.
“As your Speaker, I must say that presiding over the debates in this process was not easy. However, from this experience, the Senate emerged stronger and more than ever before demonstrated its commitment to protecting devolution,” remarked Speaker Lusaka.
The Senate of the 12th Parliament held six sessions; from 31st August 2017, up to 21st June 2022.