JIMMY KAHINDI: HE LEFT THE UN FOR DEVO­LU­TION

JIMMY KAHINDI, SPEAKER KIL­IFI COUNTY AS­SEM­BLY / “If all the MCAs are re­elected next year, they will do much bet­ter. Their qual­ity in de­bates was poor in 2014 com­pared to now,’’ he says.

The Star (Kenya) - - Front Page - ALPHONCE GARI @TheS­tarKenya

THREE years ago Jimmy Kahindi dumped his le­gal work and a high pro­file UN job to join the Kil­ifi County As­sem­bly with the creation of de­volved gov­ern­ments in this coun­try.

His dream was to ‘re­turn home’ and be part of the founder team of devo­lu­tion. He also hoped to come up with leg­is­la­tion in the county that would cre­ate trans­for­ma­tion and change lives.

He joined the As­sem­bly only to find MCAs with lit­tle knowl­edge of the law and rules of pro­ce­dure.

The as­sem­bly’s in­fra­struc­ture was in a de­plorable state, with the Cham­ber and his of­fice leak­ing and with­out proper air con­di­tion­ing.

The Speaker em­barked on a longterm jour­ney of cre­at­ing a land­mark project that would change the face of the as­sem­bly and cre­ate a proper en­vi­ron­ment not only for the MCAs but in terms of in­fra­struc­ture.

He was forced to en­hance train­ing for the MCAs.

The train­ing was meant to em­power the MCAs with knowl­edge of the Con­sti­tu­tion and de­bat­ing tech­niques, among other skills.

“If all the MCAs are re­elected next year, they will do much bet­ter. Their qual­ity in de­bates was poor in 2014 com­pared to now,’’ he says.

The MCAs have been able to pass 35 Bills that are now law, in­clud­ing the Schol­ar­ship Fund Act, Co­conut Act, Mbegu Act, and Peo­ple with Dis­abil­i­ties Act.

In the for­ma­tive years he could not leave the as­sem­bly when cru­cial Bills were be­ing dis­cussed be­cause of the chal­lenges re­lat­ing to the grasp of is­sues.

“Cur­rently, I can com­fort­ably leave the MCAs to han­dle se­ri­ous Bills with the rich knowl­edge they have ac­quired.”

Train­ing MCAs to un­der­stand the law, pro­ceed­ings and stand­ing or­ders to en­able them to ful­fill their man­date was also crit­i­cal.

Four years later, Kahindi is proud of his work. The Cham­ber is fully equipped with ex­ec­u­tive seats for the MCAs and spe­cialised ones for the phys­i­cally chal­lenged.

“Even my seat is con­ve­nient for a Mem­ber liv­ing with dis­abil­i­ties to op­er­ate from - as it is user friendly,’’ he says.

In terms of tech­nol­ogy, the county has ac­quired fa­cil­i­ties sim­i­lar to those of the Na­tional As­sem­bly, in­clud­ing the lat­est as­sem­bly Hansard fa­cil­i­ties, im­ported from Ger­many at a cost of Sh55 mil­lion.

The As­sem­bly is in the process of set­ting up broad­band that will en­able live trans­mis­sion of pro­ceed­ings through the In­ter­net.

FOUR YEARS LATER, KAHINDI IS PROUD OF HIS WORK. THE CHAM­BER IS EQUIPPED WITH EX­EC­U­TIVE SEATS FOR THE MCAS

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