NCIC chairman Dr Samuel Kobia


The National Cohesion and Integration Commission warns President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga against forcing their way through a referendum without consensus.

NCIC chairman Dr Samuel Kobia says the foundation of the Building Bridges Initiative was to unite the country. However, a contested poll will miss its real objective.

Dr Kobia adds that BBI process should be without politics, saying that if the door for more debate on the report is closed that has recommended constitutional amendments, many Kenyans will feel left out.

"There was a stated intention that the BBI process will be inclusive and every Kenya views will be in the document. Now it seems that is not going to be the case on the way to a referendum, " he said.

"If it is a contested referendum, then we will not have achieved that stated objective of inclusivity and uniting Kenyans,” Kobia added.

"That is really where we need to challenge the BBI to be faithful to its integrity of building bridges that unite all Kenyans. I think there is still time for that to happen, " he added.

"We have seen many quarters where this is being said that there are still issues which if not addressed, then we will have a very contested referendum that could divide more than unite.”

“Our major concern is not about the top echelon of power. Ours is how inclusive are we when it comes to the levels where you have the majority of Kenyans. Because by expanding the Executive, you might satisfy the political aspirations of individuals,” he said.

"As we know, even those in the Opposition are individuals. Of course, they will tell their community that 'we are representing you,' but if history is anything go by, it doesn't translate into development in the areas, say where the President or the Deputy President, or Prime Minister come from, it does not. It will only benefit individuals, political aspirations and interests.”


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