Like the Saba Saba day that precedes it, Nane Nane is a day that marks the continuation and escalation of the struggle for a just and democratic Kenya, a day when we remember how the people’s call for political pluralism was met with brute force and scores of innocent Kenyans were tortured, maimed and killed.
In commemoration of this day, we the citizens of Kenya,
Recognizing that Kenyans have long been involved in the struggle to demolish the colonial architecture of the state that was inherited, and has been unturned and preserved, by our post-independence leaders;
Appreciating that we have endured and sustained the struggle for a transformed Kenya;
Aware that the constitution we promulgated in August 2010 is the text on which we shall found our future and the tool with which we shall re-imagine and reengineer our nationhood;
Noting that since August 2010 the ruling elite has consistently undermined our endeavours to fully implement the constitution;
Further noting that the Jubilee regime, which has been in power since April 2013, has caused the gradual collapse of the state through runaway corruption;
Angered by the reversal of our democratic gains as characterized by disrespect for the constitution, the rule of law, human rights and lack of transparency and accountability;
Concerned by the blatant attempts at a re-centralization of power;
Aware that there is a concerted effort to introduce a constitutional amendment to benefit the ruling elite through the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI);
And fully determined to protect the constitution and to continue fighting for its complete implementation;
Hereby reiterate and demand,
that the Building Bridges Initiative—which has revealed itself to be a scam, a waste of public resources and an attempt at mutilating the constitution—be abandoned to give way to the full implementation of the letter and the spirit of the constitution;
that revenue-sharing must be equitable across the country. The hallmark of devolution is equitable access to resources for equitable development across the country. Attempts by certain members of the Senate to perpetuate unequal development for political self-interest are an unacceptable negation of the spirit of the constitution and must be strongly resisted;
that Parliament must immediately comply with the two-thirds gender rule enshrined in the constitution, failing which the Chief Justice must immediately require the president to dissolve parliament as provided for in Art 261(7) of the constitution. Indeed, seven years ago, the Supreme Court set a deadline for Parliament to pass a law on women’s representation in elected positions. Twice thereafter, in 2015 and 2019, the High Court has directed Parliament to enact such a law or face dissolution but on every occasion, Parliament has mocked the people by disrespecting the constitution and has emboldened the Executive to disregard the two-thirds gender rule in naming the cabinet;
that the moratorium on evictions issued by the President on the 11th of May 2020 be respected. We strongly condemn the continued evictions and dispossession of vulnerable Kenyans, in particular:
– the forced evictions in Kariobangi North and Ruai that took place between the 4th and the 16th of May 2020 and left more than 7,000 families homeless;
– the demolitions of 300 Ogiek homes in the Mau Forest by the Kenya Forest Service on the 23rd of July 2020 which have rendered this vulnerable community homeless and led to interethnic violence that has seen another 100 homes burnt down in the last week;
– the burning down of 28 homes belonging to the impoverished Sengwer community in Embobut Forest in the Cherangany Hills by the Kenya Forest Service;
that, as a matter of urgency, the government develops a more inclusive and human rights-centered response to the COVID-19 crisis. In effect, the lack of preparedness and effectiveness in preventing and suppressing the spread of the coronavirus, coupled with the brutality with which the state security and administrative apparatus have enforced the government directives, have traumatized vulnerable groups in the society who are battling unemployment, loss of livelihoods and myriad other hardships brought about by the pandemic. Moreover, the theft of COVID-19 funds amid a national health crisis is an abhorrent manifestation of the ingrained culture of plunder of public resources that continues unabated under the indifferent watch of the government. Of particular concern is the evidence suggesting the involvement of members of the president’s family in the plunder of COVID-19 resources. We demand that in this instance, the government sheds its complacency and moves with haste to bring to justice those who have dared to turn to personal use resources destined to fund a national health emergency of unprecedented proportions. If the government fails to do so, we will commence a citizen prosecution of those involved in the plunder of COVID-19 resources.
that the government put an immediate stop to the escalating cases of extrajudicial killings and police brutality that have been experienced in recent times. The unwarranted use of force by the police during peaceful demonstrations—on Saba Saba Day and more recently at the Nairobi County Assembly—is a clear indication that attempts at police reform are failing and that the government has declared war on citizens.
And finally, we pledge to honour those who have endured great hardship or even paid the ultimate price in the quest for a just and democratic Kenya by vigorously resisting all attempts to bring unconstitutional and retrogressive amendments to our hard-won constitution and by continuing the struggle to see it fully implemented.
We also honour members of the medical fraternity who, under great odds, including insufficient official support have continued to lead in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Your struggles are not in vain and your sacrifices remain in the grateful hearts of the people of this country.
Inuka Trust Kenya.
Kenya Human Rights Commission