Thirdway Alliance leader Dr. Ekuru Aukot has affirmed that the Punguza Mizigo Bill isn’t intended to merge wards or affect Counties. Speaking to the press after addressing the Bungoma County Assembly, Aukot said the Bill doesn’t negatively affect women leadership too, as it’s being purported. “The Bill is not merging wards, the wards remain as they are 1,450 and the Bill is actually saying we are going to use the wards as a primary unit of accelerating development, we are also not touching the Counties, the Counties remain 47,” he said.
Women leaders have come out to condemn the Punguza Mizigo Bill, saying it seeks to undermine women leadership and representation of constituencies. However, Aukot has said wondered why some are opposed to the idea that more money will be sent to the Counties, “The truth of the matter is…if someone(MCA) isn’t on good terms with the Governor, collectively people there in that ward will be punished, but now we are saying let’s change the story let development move beyond County headquarters.” Calls for Kenyans to wait on the Building Bridges Initiative report to be tabled first have also been prominent, with leaders led by Raila Odinga urging Kenyans to ignore the Punguza Mizigo Bill.