A scenario of MPs working up to odd hours therefore appears inevitable as the two-year timeline set for the enactment of the Bills fast approaches. Though Parliament has about nine months before it stands dissolved, it only has four months from April 17 when it resumes from a month’s break to pass the Bills.

Meeting the Constitutional deadlines as set out in the Fifth Schedule of the Charter has proved a big challenge and it would require a different approach, especially from the Executive to ensure the necessary Bills are endorsed within the timelines.

MPs have on numerous occasions criticised the Executive for sleeping on the job, waiting until the eleventh hour to push Parliament into rushing the enactments of the Bills.

Last year, Parliament sat up to midnight for four days to endorse at least 16 Bills as the Executive dithered in processing them in time.

And failing to learn from this experience the Executive again went to sleep only to force MPs to work overtime in February to endorse three Bills on Devolution. One of them, the County Governments Bill has, however, been returned by the President for further consideration.

Indeed Parliament would have a shorter time as it also failed to pass three Land Bills within the February 27, deadline.

An extension of 60 days was therefore approved by the legislators, meaning the Land Bill, Land Registration Bill and the National Land Commission Bill must be passed by April 27.

The Bills that must be passed by August 27 include those on Leadership and Integrity, Right to recall MPs, determination of questions of membership of Parliament, right to petition Parliament and assumption of Office of President.

Others are Bills on Judiciary Fund, Financial Control, National Security Organs and Command of the National Police Service.

The Bill on Leadership and Integrity seeks to give effect to Chapter Six of the Constitution establishing procedures and mechanisms for the effective administration of the Chapter and prescribing penalties for those who contravene the law.

By PETER OPIYO, The Standard

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