President Uhuru Kenyatta has said changes to the Constitution proposed through BBI are meant to secure the country’s future.
Speaking during the State of the Nation address on Thursday, Uhuru said every journey starts with a single step, taken in faith, at times against all odds.
“Like Moses in the Bible who sat at the top of Mt Nebo and saw the future that the people of Israel were about to cross into the promised land, I too have seen our future,” he said.
“That journey has commenced with the release of the Building Bridges Initiative report. More importantly, let us engage in positive discourse (on BBI) with a view to effecting far-reaching changes.”
“Major changes are needed to our Constitution and other laws so as to lay the foundation for the prosperous future that we seek.”
Uhuru said this moment in time is Kenya’s meeting with destiny.
“When generations come long after we are gone, let them say that we made the right decision at this moment; that we chose unity over division; that we dreamt of and birthed a happier, more harmonious and more prosperous Nation,” he said.
“Kenya is greater than any individual. Indeed, Kenya is greater than the sum of its citizens. We are a beacon of hope, an icon of peace and stability in a volatile region, and a role model for progressive African Social Democracy.”
He said as a people, we must seize this constitutional moment to ensure that we deliver to future generations of Kenyans the country that they deserve.
“(Former UN secretary general) Kofi Annan aptly reminded us that, “The world is not ours to keep. We hold it in trust for future generations.”
The bill to amend the Constitution through the Building Bridges Initiative could be published by Monday next week.
The gazettement could dash hopes for groups pushing for amendments to the report.
Sources say political hardliners in the BBI camp may have told President Uhuru Kenyatta and his handshake partner Raila Odinga to slam the door to any new proposal.
The publication of the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020, would guarantee strict adherence to the June 2021 referendum timeliness unveiled in Naivasha last week.
The Star has established that Uhuru and Raila have yielded to the pressure from their allies and okayed the publication of the bill in a few days.
“The Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020 will be with the government printer and we expected it to be published by Friday or latest Monday,” said a source at the presidency aware of the plans.
Another senior official at the State Department of Justice and the office of the Attorney General Kihara Kariuki told the Star that the bill could leave the AG’s office ‘soonest’ for printing.