Lobby wants Parliament to pass gender rule in first sitting

A lobby group wants the High Court to order the 12th Parliament to pass legislation to implement the two-thirds gender rule during its first sitting set for next week.

The court certified the case urgent.

The two-thirds gender rule provide that no gender will be more that two thirds of members.

Justice Chacha Mwita directed the Centre for Rights Education and Awareness to serve the petition to the respondents, who include the speakers of the National Assembly and Senate.

CREW filed the petition on Tuesday.

CREW and CRAWN Trust further want a declaration that the failure by Parliament to meet the two-thirds gender rule is a violation of the Constitution, a violation of the rights of women to equality, and violation of the freedom from discrimination.

The petitioners want the court to declare that the composition of the National Assembly and Senate has failed to meet the constitutional threshold.

They argue that in less than seven days, the 12th Parliament will hold its first sitting, yet the election of the new MPs has not achieved the gender rule.

The lobbies said the High Court declared the failure by Parliament to enact the required legislation within the time frame specified by the Supreme Court advisory opinion a violation of the Constitution.

They also said the Constitution provides that any attempt to establish a government other than in compliance with the Constitution is unlawful.

“It is in the interest of justice that the matter is heard and determined expeditiously before the swearing in of the members of the National Assembly and the Senate,” the petitioners said.

The case will be heard on August 21.

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