The parliamentary committee on administration and national security has urged Kenyans to avoid fuelling ethnic and tribal divisions but instead embrace their diversity.
The committee is recommending an amendment of the National Cohesion and Integration Commission NCIC Act in a bid to contain political inciters and hate speech mongers.
Speaking to the media in Mombasa on Friday, the committee chair Paul Koinange, said the act is silent on the punishment to be imposed on political leaders implicated with hate speech and incitements.
He says the committee recommends for a stiff penalty to those found guilty of fuelling ethnic and tribal divisions.
“We are working on the amendment of the NCIC Act so that any politician hurling insults and incitements can be held accountable. The person can also be fined for such an offence,” said the chair.
Koinange further notes that the only sure way to curb ethnic and tribal incitements by political leaders is by amending the Act.
He reiterated the committees’ commitment to ensuring that Kenyans co-exist peacefully.
The MP notes that the committee has slated a series of meetings with senior government officials including the cabinet secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i and the director of criminal investigations DCI.
He said “Should someone ask me and if I had the powers I would suggest that the country goes to a campaign a month or two before the general elections,”
“We need to focus on development and not empty talk day in day out. There are critical issues that we as Kenyans need to address,” he said.
At the same time, his counterpart, Teso North MP Oku Kaunya says there is a need to amend the NCIC Act terming it a toothless dog.
“The law must be amended so that those found culpable of committing such offences can be held responsible. We need to strengthen the NCIC Act on hate speech and political incitements,” noted the legislator.
The chair further urged youths to avoid what he termed as being misused by political leaders.
“I would advise youths of this country to avoid being misused by politicians. Why do they not bring their sons and daughters?”
The National Cohesion and Integration Commission NCIC of Kenya is a government agency intended to address and reduce inter-ethnic conflicts.