Kenya passes anti-terror law

Nairobi : Kenyan lawmakers have passed the amendments proposed in the Security Laws (Amendment) Bill by two parliamentary committees amid a shouting match, name calling, blows and drama pitting the country’s two coalitions against each other.

The passage of the Bill also means that the president will now be free to appoint the new Inspector General of Police and forward the name to the National Assembly for approval.

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National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi was forced to reorganise the Order Paper putting other amendments before the Security Laws for discussion, Xinhua reported.

Members of the public and media were barred from the House to cover the proceedings, which had been adjourned twice amid fist-fights by legislators from the two coalitions.

The Security Laws (Amendment) Bill 2014 faced strong opposition in the parliament as Asman Kamama, the chairman of the departmental committee on administration and national security, made a spirited effort in vain to move the amendments made in the Bill during the Third Reading.

But both the morning and afternoon sessions degenerated into chaos, forcing the Speaker to adjourn the session twice and rescheduling the Order Paper.

According to some of the amendments, the National Intelligence Service (NIS) will now be able to arrest crime suspects and hand over to the nearest police station.