Wetangula Slams Raila Over Claim Parliament Captured By Executive

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Wetangula Slams Raila Over Claim Parliament Captured By Executive

National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetangula has responded to criticism from opposition leader Raila Odinga regarding his filing of a petition at the Supreme Court challenging the Court of Appeal’s decision on the controversial Finance Act of 2023.

Wetangula’s remarks came in reaction to Odinga’s comments made on Sunday at Kamukunji Grounds, where he suggested that Wetangula’s actions rendered him unfit for the role of National Assembly Speaker.

The leader of the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition also accused Wetangula of being influenced by the state, citing alleged frequent and irregular visits to State House for the approval of various bills into law.

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In his response on Tuesday, Wetangula characterized Odinga’s statements as embarrassing and deceptive, additionally highlighting that such remarks are undermining trust in Parliament.

“It is quite embarrassing for the former Prime Minister to be making statements that portray him and or his advisers or handlers as being ignorant of the law in particular on the role of the Speaker of the National Assembly,” said Wetangula.

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“The baseless remarks have been used to mislead the public as a decoy for diluting public confidence in the institution of Parliament, which is quite unfortunate. More so considering that the subject is a former Member of Parliament.”

He stressed that as the current Speaker of the National Assembly, he is mandated by law to participate in court proceedings that concern legal issues related to his position.

“In court proceedings by or against the Speaker of the National Assembly, it is then serving the Speaker of the National Assembly who has the legal duty to appear in court and defend the case,” he said.

“The Speaker is hence rightfully in court and has the constitutional right to appeal any decision of the Court of Appeal on behalf of the National Assembly.”

Concerning the alleged irregular invitations to State House, Wetangula clarified that he is compelled by legal obligation to attend such meetings, drawing a parallel with the United States system for reference.

“Consequently, the facilitative role of the Speakers of Parliament in the legislative processes by formally presenting the Bills for assent to the President finds its basis not just in the Constitution but in established parliamentary practice as well,” said Wetangula.

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“Indeed, looking at comparative jurisdictions such as the US Congressional system, a Bill once passed by the House of Representatives and the Senate, is subsequently submitted to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House for their signatures and thereafter it is referred to the President for assent. Therefore, it would be unconstitutional for the President to assent to Bills not formally presented by the Speakers of Parliament as required by the Constitution.”

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Wetangula Slams Raila Over Claim Parliament Captured By Executive

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