BY JOAN WANJIKU,NAIROBI,8TH SEPT,2022-Newly sworn-in Members of Parliament Thursday evening elected Moses Masika Wetangula as the new National Assembly Speaker for the 13th Parliament.
Even after failing to garner the requisite 2/3 of votes Wetangula was declared the winner after his closest competitor Kenneth Marende conceded defeat.
The former Bungoma County Senator garnered 215 votes out of 346 total votes cast against his opponent Kenneth Marende who garnered 130 votes.
According to Clerk of the National Assembly Serah Kioko who spoke earlier in parliament, for a person to qualify, they must garner at least 2/3 of the total number of votes cast in the first round of all elected members.
She noted that it was not a constitutional requirement, but a procedural requirement.
Marende who was a former Speaker has declined to go for the second round of voting leaving Wetangula as the only candidate.
Wetangula served as Minister for Foreign Affairs from 2008 to 2010 and from 2011 to 2012, and was Minister for Trade from 2012 to 2013.
He represented Sirisia Constituency in the National Assembly from February 2003 until January 2013.
Former Bungoma Senator is taking over from Justin Muturi who has held the position since 2013.
Muturi was the first Speaker to serve following the reestablishment of a bicameral Parliament, as mandated by the 2010 Constitution.
On 28 March 2013, Muturi won the speakership after a second round of voting by Members of the National Assembly, beating former Speaker Kenneth Marende by a 219–129 margin.