There was general consensus at the 74th edition of the Kara Bimonthly Talk Series forum held on 30th July 2019,

that any process of reviewing the constitution must be extensively consultative and participatory to ensure that the final outcome is responsive to the needs and expectations of majority Kenyans. Speakers and participants faulted the Punguza Mizigo initiative as not having provided adequate opportunity for public participation. Opinions were however divided on whether we need to amend the constitution or not with some of the speakers urging that focus be given to proper implementation of the current constitution first before any amendments can be entertained.  

Speaking at the forum Ms. Daisy Amdany, Executive Director, Community Advocacy and Awareness Trust, noted that the proposed amendments to the Constitution are not the solution to the challenges currently facing the country.  “There is need for the government to ensure that the Constitution is fully implemented before any amendments can be considered. The biggest challenge we are currently facing is corruption and theft of public resources both at the national and county levels and this can be partly attributed to lack of effective implementation of the constitution” she said.

Hon. John Mbadi, MP Suba South Constituency and the National Assembly Minority Leader, said that there were some provisions in the constitution that require amendments. For instance on the system of government, there is need to ensure inclusivity to avoid the tension that experienced in during the elections. He stated that any amendment process should have adequate public participation and that is what the Building Bridges Initiative is currently trying to achieve. He also called on the national and county governments to ensure prudent management of the funds allocated to them by the National Treasury for development.

Ms. Christine Nkonge, Executive Director, Katiba Institute, said that the calls for constitutional reforms and referendum are based on the inefficiencies in governance which cannot be fixed by amending the constitution. She opined that there was need to clearly define the issues in the constitution that need to be amended, and for the public to ask themselves whether the solution can only be limited to a referendum. She reiterated that the government had not yet fully implemented some provisions within the constitution and therefore the need to test their efficacy. She also called upon the government to ensure full compliance to the rule of law in the fight against corruption in Kenya.