Friday, August 27, 2010

My comment is live on the World News Network on August 27,2010 on the Subject: "Kenya president ratifies new constitution-" Joy Online

With best compliments,

Subject: "Kenya president ratifies new constitution-" Joy Online

Bishwa Nath Singh from Dalmianagar (Bihar),India.

We are delighted to learn that Kenya has adopted a long awaited new constitution, more than three weeks after it was overwhelmingly approved in a national referendum. The two principals President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga have the uphill task of ensuring that the launched harmonized draft gets the support it needs to become law. Prior to its publication, the American ambassador had urged the two principals to ensure that there is consensus on the draft constitution. The US envoy says constitutional review must be achieved by this coalition Govt.. All said and done were rectified in due course of time through referendum. Over tens of thousands of people watched as President Mwai Kibaki signed the document into law at a large ceremony in the capital, Nairobi.The debate over a new constitution had lasted twenty years .Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir was present at the event, despite being wanted for war crimes. Human Rights Watch earlier called on the Kenyan authorities to either "arrest him or bar him entry" if he were to attend. Kenya has ratified the statute requiring it to co-operate with the International Criminal Court, which has issued an arrest warrant for Bashir. However, last month the African Union instructed its members - which include Kenya - not to apprehend Bashir. The new constitution is expected to bring significant changes as expected. Some have billed it as the most important political event in Kenya's history since it gained independence from Britain in 1963.The large crowd gathered in Nairobi's main Uhuru park to watch their leader promulgate the new document, amid gun salutes and a grand parade. After Mr Kibaki signed his name, he held the document up and there was a huge cheer from the audience. The new constitution will bring a more decentralized political system, which will limit the president's powers and replace corrupt provincial governments with local counties. It will also create a second chamber of parliament - the Senate - and set up a land commission to settle ownership disputes and review past abuses. It is hoped that the changes will help bring an end to the tribal differences that have brought violence to the country in the past. The BBC's East Africa correspondent, Peter Greste, says the debate for a new constitution ebbed and flowed with each new political crisis until the elections of 2007, which were followed by the worst ethnic violence Kenya has yet seen. In the wake of the violence, everyone acknowledged that something fundamental had to change if the country was to avoid yet more trouble, our correspondent says. The historic journey that we began over twenty years ago is now coming to a happy end that is what Kibaki had said earlier this month after the results of the referendum were announced on 5 th of August 2010.There will be challenges along the way. But it is important that we look forward with renewed optimism to better days ahead. It has been revealed that the previous constitution allowed politicians to exploit tribal divisions, left courts weak, and concentrated power in the president's hands. While many Kenyans say that this is just a start - and that things could still go very wrong - most believe it is a fundamentally better document than the last. President Kibaki won a landslide victory in 2002 promising to change the constitution within 100 days of taking office. In 2005, he held a referendum but it failed to pass. The previous constitution was negotiated with the British in the early 1960s.

World News Network
August 27,2010

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