alexa If the BBI report is ready, release it now - Daily Nation

If the BBI report is ready, release it now

Friday November 8 2019

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The joint secretaries of the Building Bridges Initiative announced a fortnight ago they had finalised their report and were awaiting submission to the principals, creating, at the time, the impression that there was urgency to release the report for implementation.

To date, however, the report, which has serious implications on the politics and governance of the country, has not been presented to the principals — President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition Leader Raila Odinga.

The BBI was birthed in times of turmoil and is an outcome of the handshake between President Kenyatta and Mr Odinga after the acrimonious presidential elections of 2017.

The handshake marked the end of bitter rivalry between the two leading political leaders and ushered in an era of peace and tranquility.

The team was tasked to collect and collate views from the public and advise on ways and means of ending the perennial violence that follows every General Election, with grave ramifications on the economy, peace and stability of the nation.



That Kenya’s continued prosperity and progress was under eternal threat unless the causes of electoral violence were identified and resolved was the cornerstone of the BBI project.

Previous reports by various commissions — Waki and Kriegler — that were published after the 2007/8 electoral clashes warned that Kenya was sitting on a time bomb, and that unless urgent actions were taken to deal with festering social, economic and political wounds, tranquility would be untenable. That risk persists.

It is not lost on many that, although the report has not been published, various political formations have taken to campaigns, supporting or vilifying it and inevitably raising temperatures.

Among the issues that have provoked intense debate is the nature and shape of government.


It is claimed that BBI has proposed changes to the current government structure ostensibly to cure the persistent complaints about lack of inclusivity.

That large sections of the population feel excluded from government, and that a few privileged communities enjoy State largesse.

Opinion is divided on what should be done to cure shortcomings in governance, with critics arguing that any proposal to expand leadership would burden taxpayers and hence would be rejected.

Since the report is ready, it is only logical that it is presented to the principals so that it can be released to the public for debate and action.

This is a defining moment for the country as it seeks to deal with historical challenges and craft new strategies to steer it into the future.

The BBI report is vital in that process.