The Constitution Amendment Bill 2020 was an outcome of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI)—an effort by Kenyatta and political rival Raila Odinga, the leading contenders for the presidency in 2017 and their supporters. The BBI was expected to generally improve governance and prevent future post-election violence like that of the aftermath of the 2017 elections.
Odinga publicly declared that they had decided to put aside their political differences and come together through a “handshake.” As magnanimous and patriotic as this political gesture may have appeared to many observers, especially since it “brought calm and a sense of relief” to Kenyans following the extremely contentious 2017 presidential election, another interpretation is that this was essentially an effort to ensure the continued political relevance of Kenyatta and Odinga. In fact, many cynics view the truce with suspicion, arguing that this rapprochement could place Kenyatta, who is constitutionally barred from standing for a third term as president in 2022, in a position to assume the role of managing the country behind the scenes with a puppet president in post-2022 Kenya.
Yesterday 20th August 2021 history was made at the court of appeal. The seven-judge bench dismantled and deconstructed the Building Bridges Initiative Constitution amendment bill appeal to the extent of declaring it null and void.
The Judges gave their Ruling for more than 10 hours each second giving more reasons why BBI is not formidable. It was the second night of shock for the BBI supporters in two months after it was annulled the same way by the High Court except this time round the court of appeal had numerous reasons for doing so.
This is despite the fact that the best lawyers in Kenya with top notch skills, experience, knowledge and education background represented Uhuru, IEBC or Raila Odinga as clients. Some of the flamboyant lawyers include, Senior Counsel Otiende Amollo, Senior Counsel James Orengo, constitutional lawyer Paul Mwangi, the current Attorney General Kihara and the former Githu Muigai. According to the Law Society of Kenya President Nelson Havi, these lawyers were paid to the tune of 50 million each per brief. And that public money was used to pay for them.
“I can tell you without any fear of contradiction, that the arsenal of lawyers that was assembled for the appellants, these are lawyers that charge in the region of 50 million per brief. There were about fifty of them there…that is public money and certain people have to be accountable,” he said in a KTN News interview last night