Kenya Citizens Assembly wants to work with us!
- I participated today in a teleforum of the Kenya Citizens Assembly.
About twelve people chatted. I share excerpts from my own comments and
exchanges with Tegi Obanda +1-647-208-1265 (International Coordinator)
who is in Canada. Tegi is very supportive of our work and urges us to
work together. He is interested that we organize groups throughout
Kenya that could discuss the Kenyan Constitution drafts and provide
delegates for the Citizens Assembly. They will have another teleforum
next Saturday at the same time (5:30pm-7:30pm Kenya Time (+3hrs GMT),
9:30am-11:30am Eastern-- New York Time (-5hrs GMT)) and they are
considering using our chat room http://www.worknets.org/chat/ Also, we
will be having a meeting in Nakuru and are inviting Citizen Assembly
participants to join us and participate from there both locally and online.
Andrius Kulikauskas, Minciu Sodas, http://www.ms.lt, ms@...
Andrius Kulikauskas says: I lead the Pyramid of Peace
http://www.pyramidofpeace.net with 100 peacemakers on-the-ground in
Kenya and we're working on a Constitution for Humanity
Tegi and all, I very much support the CA. The Pyramid of Peace wishes
to contribute a wider perspective, a Constitution for Humanity, for
which any nation-state's constitution would be secondary. I lead the
Minciu Sodas laboratory for independent thinkers, and we responded to
avert genocide because we have quite a few participants in Kenya. But
we did so as humans, not Kenyans. Our 100+ peacemakers opened the roads
at Naivasha, near Eldoret, unlocked Molo, and most recently we're
engaging the Mungikis who demonstrated in Nairobi. Next weekend we're
organizing a meeting in Nakuru to discuss the Constitution for Humanity
and we invite all here to join us.
My outline of the Constitution for Humanity is based on the rights to
love, to care, to cherish. We have a top-down command structure which
lets independent peacemakers wield authority without restriction. We
want to have a bottom-up system of Stewardship Councils organized by
location and bioregion for consensus, especially regarding sharing of
resources. We want to have Choirs for each culture or tribe to have
clear and responsible leadership so that we might cherish our
upbringings, each Choir having 30 or so talented, literate people
(artists, musicians, professors, scientists, etc.) who speak for that
culture or tribe, be able to establish, annul, reform traditions, and
design the upbringing for the children and youth and their relationshp
with the elders.
I am a Lithuanian (born in the USA) living in Lithuania and writing from
there. So I don't want to speak for Kenyans, except to say that our
leaders and participants are very interested to think beyond Kenya. I
suggest to consider the nation-state as a historical reality but perhaps
not forever, and to have the constitution be open to the future. A
nation-state allows people to be independent from oppressors and
typically unites several bioregions so they share a port, natural
resources, wilderness, highlands. Yet we see that the dynamic in the
crisis was very different in the Lake, Rift Valley, Nairobi and Coastal
regions. So as the future develops do they have to be subject to each
other in every way? Can they cooperate as bioregions. So I have
encouraged us not to acknowledge "Kenya" any more than we have to. We
will have each bioregion's Stewardship Council participate separately in
the Constitution for Humanity. And the Kenyan national questions would
be handled I think by a Constitutional Youth Authority (perhaps like
your CA) where the emphasis is on the Youth because they care about the
future, and the point is to make sure that the Kenyan Constitution is in
harmony with a greater Constitution for Humanity.
Tegi Obanda says: Great ideas Andrius---we welcome all avenues for dialogue.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: I agree with Andrew Mweu. Rachel Wambui Kungu
(our current Commander of Operations) made clear to us the need for an
Opposition and that is the role for us that a Constitutional Youth
Autority for Kenya might play, too. [...]
I propose an alternative for our times that I am taking. The analogy
is with Linus Torvalds and the Linux computer operating system. I am
an "inventor" taking responsibility to outline and maintain the
Constitution for Humanity. Each individual, location, bioregion,
culture can choose to participate or not. Of course, I look to them for
feedback to see what works or not. And I continuously evolve the
Constitution as if it were versions of software. I do it as the leader
of the Minciu Sodas laboratory for independnet thinkers around the
world. But this way we can have rapid evolution and actually have more
consensus because it has to happen at every level all the time. [...]
Which for Kenya and the CA might mean that there is lets say a Drafter
of a Kenyan constitution, perhaps leading a team, and they create an
evolving document for those who participate in the CA. And they
gradually extend thta to take over the country. So the CA and its many
local groups can rule the country now to the extent that it is able.
I propose two structures for the CA: A team of Drafters, and then a
system of Stewardship Councils organized locally and by bioregion.
Tegi Obanda says: To reply to Andrius, the drafting of the costitution
had alreay been dne. We already have people-driven draft. So the task
remaining is very small--simply discussion of contentous isssues
thenreferendum--on those contetious issues. [...] The Bomas draft can be
found here: http://www.Tegi Obanda.blogspot.com
Andrius Kulikauskas says: The first responsibility of the Stewardship
Councils would be to include all those who care, the widest diversity,
so that they strengthen their community by making sure that resources
are shared well. And the second responsibility would be to make sure
the Stewadship Councils are able to collaborate with each other. And
the third responsibility is to have a framework that they like, the
Constitution serves them well. I think if they are weak on the first
two then their opinion on the third will not be so heartful. Thank you
for the Bomas draft, I will take a look.
I invite all to join Janet Feldman's working group Holistic Helping
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/holistichelping/ which is the most active
at our lab. Send a blank message to
Tegi Obanda says: Andrius we can discuss how to merge the work for the
constitution for humanity and the CA effort. The youth group should be
part of the CA.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: and if you are in Kenya please call Rachel
Wambui Kungu at +254 721 626 389 if you would like to participate in
Nakuru at our meeting next weekend. Yes
Tegi Obanda says: or vice versa but we should have one forum
Andrius Kulikauskas says: What would be the best logic for you?
Tegi Obanda says: the people that you have mobilized are Kenyans. We are
working towards one constitution not two. We want the new constitution
to be as universally truthfulo and relevant as possible.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: For us I think the best logic would be if
there was an organ like you say the CA and/or the CYA, that was
responsible for the constitutional issues, and what we would like to do
would be to organize Stewardship Councils that would be the basis for
making sure that all bioregions are represented, and that might be the
route by which delegates could participate? So that would make sure that
the people who represent globally are also active locally. I mean
nationally are also active locally.
Tegi Obanda says: Yes, we are talking basically about the same thing.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: Also, I am not too concerned about the details
of the Kenyan constitution but I think it would be a real breakthrough
if the Constitution envisaged that it was Not the supreme authority but
that there are bigger principles.
Tegi Obanda says: If you have structurees alrady in some provinvces,
then there is o need overlapping
Andrius Kulikauskas says: We have peacemakers throughout the troubled
regions and they have engaged manypeople but we are just starting to
organize local structures.
Tegi Obanda says: That;'s what I meant, we merge. and create once space,
say in nakuru--then discuss within that sppace the concept of
constitution for humasnityy and the CA process.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: Yes I also like Nakuru as the center because
then we are not stuck in a Nairobi mindset. Also, Nakuru was a peace
haven for quite some time. So please feel free to have us in mind as you
organize your work in Kenya.
Tegi Obanda says: What you are ying is very crucial because the
constition-making process cannot be successful if we do not embrace peace,
Andrius Kulikauskas says: We want to be as supportive as we can. I think
it would be great if there was a Nation-State that didn't think that
Nation-State's are the end all and be all. That would make them much
Tegi Obanda says: and peace can only be assured if we have a humane and
just constitution that will critically look at the historical origin of
our national hostitlies
Andrius Kulikauskas says: Dennis Kimambo says "Humanity before Politics"
he is one of our leaders, Commanders.
Tegi Obanda says: Exactly. For a long time, we have focused on politics
before humanity. And the price can be steep--that preocuupation with
poitics for politics sake.
Tegi Obanda says: Andrius can you link your group with bugnge la
mwananchi. george is the coordinator
Andrius Kulikauskas says: Tegi, I am very glad that you understand me.
And I'm learning quickly. I think if there is a chance, then there are
some basic ideas that would make any constitution more humane. Hi
George! Where are you? And if you give me your email I would gladly
sign you up for Holistic Helping and you would see the actions in the
different cities. And perhap you know Janet Feldman, she is the leader.
(George) mwananchimzalendo says: Hi Andrius! i live in Kenya, email
Andrius Kulikauskas says: Some basic principles would be the right of
independent peacemakers to take humanitarian action if nobody else is;
the right of people to organize their upbringing through the tribes; the
right of all people who care to be included in the stewardship of a
bioregion, even if they don't live there.
Tegi Obanda says: Ok so we continue the discussion over e-mail and then
next staurday we will have a texting chat same time.
mwananchimzalendo says: Tegi, yes we got alot to discuss, let us do
email in the meantime and see howmuch we will have next saturday
Andrius Kulikauskas says: I invite you to use our chat room next time
because it is in thePublic DOmain and so the archive can be shared.
Tegi Obanda says: will it be at the same time?
Andrius Kulikauskas says: the room is open all the time and we would
reserve it for you whenever you like. And we can always create more rooms.
Tegi Obanda says: I have checked it. We can explore it next week with
paerticipants Yes the constitution must be quided by bigger principles.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: I'm glad you think that. And it's strange but
there's a chance here. I should ask you, do you know what we should try
to do for funding? Because we are doing great work but I and 4 others
are funding it from our pocket and I have reached my limiit (about
10,000 USD) which is money I borrowed. I will try to encourage each
local group to raise its own funds locally and with supporters around
the world. But it would be good to know how to encourage that. My own
contribution I think of as a business investment from my lab and we have
built many assets. But I am thinking how to make that work. These same
issues I think are relevant for you because the local councils are going
to need funds and be self-ufficient in some way to participate in the CA
Tegi Obanda says: Funds are alweays available (from the communities
themselves) if people come together and adopt a common purpose).
Andrius Kulikauskas says: yes I think you are right but yet it takes skill
Tegi Obanda says: That's right. It takes skill to bring people together
so they can believe in the vision and share the vission.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: yes Also we have a very effective command
structure and I am thinkng of applying ourselves to engage companies
that we care about and scrutinize them and have them or their
stakeholders pay us to do so. The scrutiny makes their share price more
accurate and in the long run attracts investment and their price goes
up. And so it's a matter of which companies are worth our interest, are
interesting for us.
Tegi Obanda says: I have no experience with cmpanies. I know they
usually want quid pro quo.
Andrius Kulikauskas says: Yes so I'm thinking of having an adversarial
cooperation as they might with a labor union. Yahoo and Safaricom being
two companies that might be interested. But also we have good contacts
with the Mungiki demonstrators and they are interested that we embrace
them. And I am thinking to suggest to Rachel that we encourage them to
help us investigate corruption rather than to investigate murders, etc.
Taking many small risks rather than big ones.
Tegi Obanda says: So we had problems with skypecast voice, then rsorted
to texting. Thee will be e-mail discusions over the the next 7 days,
then the finall structuring on saturday march 15. The next week one will
be crucial since then is when structures and city reps are going to be
Andrius Kulikauskas says: Would you like us to propose representatives?
Tegi Obanda says: I suggest that people attend next weeks discussion.
And then they are selected by all in a meeting. Andrius can you bring
those i your structure to next weeks meeting so we have o join discussion?
Andrius Kulikauskas says: ok I will try! they will be in Nakuru for our
on-the-ground meeting then. could you encourage your people to attend
the Nakuru meeting? Saturday evening or the next day on Sunday? that
would be great if we might synergize I will share your and my exchanges
here is that all right? to our groups
Tegi Obanda says: yes, I will
Andrius Kulikauskas says: great [...] yes I encourage you to use our
chat room http://www.worknets.org/chat/ because it is open all the time,
it is in the Public Domain, and there is a public transcript and if it
becomes too active we can use multiple rooms and we can have Skype
conversations in parallel
Tegi Obanda says: ok
Drafted by the Coalition for Constitutional Reforms, Kenya (CCR-K)
1. Establishment of a representative Citizens Assembly: Amendment of
Section 47 (ties parliament's and the president's hands - they cannot
reject the draft after referendum); national discussion of contentious
issues and reform process by March 31, 2008; and preliminary discussion
goes up to June 30, 2008
2. Civic Education Workshops - To discuss the Bomas draft and bring up
contentious issues (July 1-September 30, 2008)
3. Contentious issues drawn from Civic Education Workshops (July 1 -
September 30, 2008)
4. Referendum Questions drawn from contentious issues (Oct 1-31, 2008)
5. Referendum on contentious issues only (November 18, 2008)
6. Final Constitution redraft based on referendum results (November
7. Final copy presented to parliament (December 1, 2008)
8. Parliament automatically passes (enacts) the new constitution into
law - has no power to discuss or reject (see stage 1 above), by December
9. President automatically assents to the new constitution - has no
power to refuse to assent (see stage 1 above), by December 5, 2008
10. The new constitution replaces the old constitution, and is
implemented immediately (as of December 12, 2008)
Citizen's Assembly Role and Objectives
1.To set the roadmap, with dates and deadlines for constitutional reforms.
2.To mobilize citizens to actualize constitutional reforms and take
corrective measures in case people are blocked.
3.To set up regional citizens' caucuses to enable Kenyans to give their
views on how they want to be governed.
4.To serve as the voice of the populace in the constitutional reform
1.Agree on the Draft (Zero or Bomas)
2.Roadmap to Reforms
3.Role of Citizen's Assembly
4.Authority of Citizen's Assembly (as part of transition)
5.Establishment of C.A caucuses (Abroad, in Kenya-provinces, districts etc).
6.Action Plans and Time lines
c)Resource Mobilization Committee
We, the people of Kenya -
ACKNOWLEDGING the supremacy of the Almighty God of all creation:
HONOURING those who heroically struggled to bring freedom and justice to
PROUD of our ethnic, cultural and religious diversity and determined to
live in peace and unity as one
indivisible sovereign nation:
RESPECTFUL of the natural environment that is our heritage, and
determined to sustain it for the
benefit of future generations:
COMMITTED to nurturing and protecting the well-being of the individual,
the family and the
RECOGNISING the aspirations of all Kenyans for a government based on the
essential values of
freedom, democracy, social justice and the rule of law:
EXERCISING our sovereign and inalienable right to determine the form of
governance of our country
and having participated fully in the making of this Constitution:
ADOPT, enact and give this Constitution to ourselves and to our future
GOD BLESS KENYA