By STEVE MKAWALE and ATHMAN AMRAN
Marende appealed to President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga to adhere to the letter and spirit of the Constitution, which dictates public participation as the country, goes through transition.
He said leaders must put the interest of the country before their own during this critical period.
“I call for patience and further appeal to the Executive to adhere to the substance of our Constitution which dictates public participation and consultation in accordance with the National Accord and Reconciliation Act,” Marende said.
He was speaking at Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi where he opened a two-day workshop dubbed “Towards Effective Devolved Government in Kenya: Reflecting On and Planning for County Assemblies.”
The Speaker stressed the importance of speeding up the process of devolution, saying a devolved system of government would fast track development.
“That it is the best available way to ensure equitable distribution of wealth and closing in on the social economic disparities through proper fiscal measures, and of triggering positive competition that will enhance transparency and accountability,” said Marende.
He observed that if properly implemented, devolution would encourage interdependence between regions thus greater appreciation of each other and better cohesion among the people of Kenya.
The workshop is organised by the National Assembly in conjunction with donor agencies and is expected to lay modalities for ensuring County Assemblies work.
Marende allayed fears that county governments would weaken the central government, saying the two governments, though distinct, are supposed to be consultative but independent in discharge of their mandate.
Speaking during the same forum, Deputy Speaker Farah Maalim said the country has to lay the ground for County Assemblies or risk having County Governments similar to the current county councils.
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