Legal experts have raised questions a day after President William Ruto assented to the contentious Privatization Bill, 2023.
The law gives power to the National Treasury Cabinet Secretary to sell public entities to private sector. The National Assembly will only come in to ‘ratify’.
The question then arises: Will the newly assented Privatization Act, 2023 be challenged in Court for donating the entire National Assembly role and powers to Executive (Cabinet)?
Again, the doctrine of separation of powers would be under jeopardy as the same Executive that has failed the public entities will be offering, for sale or lease, (perhaps to themselves, proxies and or cronies?) without the crucial parliamentary oversight.
Curiously, the new law reduces Parliament to merely ‘ratifying’ decisions of the Executive (Cabinet) which goes against the letter and spirit of ‘Money Bills’ under Art. 114
Parliamentary ratification is not equivalent to oversight and requires August House approval
Since the Cabinet operates under the President, some critics fear, the decision of the President under Art 135 will be deemed equal on the same sale of public property.
Another vexing question – Will Cabinet, and under what powers, conduct mandatory public participation before identifying what to sell and when to sell or lease?
In any case, the composition and or formation of Cabinet is not as representative and diverse as Parliament