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Government shouldn't send mixed signals on Dadaab

Saturday February 11, 2017

Although it is a given that the Executive and the Judiciary ought not to speak with one voice on all matters, it is important for the government as a collective unit to set a clear agenda for Kenya in matters of State and foreign policy.

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Much as the two institutions should be independent, they ought not to send mixed signals on critical issues that affect the country’s relationship with other states and the international community.

This is why it is confusing for the Executive to say on the one hand that the Dadaab refugee camp will remain closed while on the other, the courts rule that it cannot be closed. One of the principal considerations in law is that court rulings must be enforceable.

It is the responsibility of the Executive to enforce the edicts of courts. But what happens in a situation such as this, when the courts are ordering the Executive to enforce an order that directly and significantly deviates from its stated policy direction?

What will happen in such a situation when a foreign institution agrees with one arm of government and not the other? Are both speaking the same language to the international community? Is there not a need for a more collaborative approach on such an important issue?



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