REFERENDUM BELLS: Odinga says collection of one minion signatures to start next week

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BY NAMULONGO PETER,NAIROBI,13TH NOV,2020-ODM leader Raila Odinga has said the collection of one million signatures in preparation for the BBI referendum will kick off next week.

“We will be doing the launch of signature collection sometime next week,” Raila said.

Raila made the remarks on Friday at his office after hosting a section of leaders from the coastal region.

He said that he wants the exercise to be done as quickly as possible so that the matter is handed over to the IEBC.

“…then we can move towards the next phase of a referendum. This matter should be concluded by the latest April next year.”

He also said that the issues raised by the coastal delegation of leaders will be reflected in the BBI report.

The leaders at the same time expressed their unwavering support for the BBI process.

The ODM leader said that “a new Kenya is in the offing.”

His remarks come as more pressure from several groups continue to pile up calling for review of the report before being subjected to referendum.

The Council of Governors had recommended for some changes to the report, including the establishment of the Deputy Ministers posts.

Governors also wanted that the positions of their running mates be open to any gender and not be for an opposite gender of the governor as per the report.

They also want the office of the Director of Criminal Investigations as well as the National Police Service to be independent the way they are.

Members of County Assemblies have also proposed a raft of changes to the report, but the chances of being heard are slim.

MCAs had requested to hold their meeting at the Bomas of Kenya, but it was cancelled due to the Covid-19 protocols.

A section of church leaders had also claimed that the BBI taskforce ignored their proposals.

The leaders drawn from the evangelical ministries on Wednesday said it was unfortunate that despite having presented their memorandum to the taskforce, none of their concerns had been captured in the final draft.

Led by Bishop Mark Kariuki, the leaders said issues raised by the church in the 2010 Constitution have not been exhausted.

They said this is the reason they welcomed the BBI proposals hoping that they would tackle areas that had not been dealt with.

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