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Procedure for Deregistration of a Political Party in Kenya

The Political Parties Act contains the provisions on how to deregister a political party in Kenya. Article 92 of the Constitution mandated parliament to enact laws that govern political parties in Kenya, hence the Political Parties Act.

Deregistration Of A Political Party In Kenya

The Registrar of Political Parties may deregister a political party in Kenya if the political party—

  • has contravened the provisions of Article 91 of the Constitution (on the basic requirements to register as a political party in Kenya);
  • does not promote the free and fair nomination of candidates;
  • does not adhere to the law relating to the nomination of candidates;
  • does not respect the national values and principles of the Constitution;
  • obtained its registration in a fraudulent manner;
  • has instigated or participated in the commission of an election offence; or
  • has acted contrary to the provisions of section 26 of the Political Parties Act (using money allocated to a political party for any other purposes other than those specified in the Political Parties Act);
  • does not have the representation of special interest groups (youth, women and persons with disabilities);
  • does not maintain the requirements for full political party registration (set out under section 7 of the Political Parties Act);
  • has contravened the provisions of Article 81(b) of the Constitution (which stipulates that “not more than two-thirds of the members of elective public bodies shall be of the same gender”);

Before deregistering a political party, the Registrar of Political Parties should—

  • inform the political party, in writing, of the particulars of the breach or contravention;
  • inform the political party, in writing, of the intention to deregister the political party; and
  • direct the political party to remedy the breach or contravention within ninety days or otherwise show cause why the party should not be deregistered.

The Registrar of Political Parties may suspend the registration of a political party to enable that political party to remedy the breach specified in the notice issued by the Registrar.

A political party that has been suspended as above is not entitled to any of the rights and privileges of a provisionally registered political party.

The Registrar should deregister a political party which has not remedied the breach or complied with the Political Parties Act as required by the Registrar.

The Registrar should deregister a political party which has been declared to be a prohibited organisation under the provisions of any written law.

The Registrar of Political Parties should, within fourteen days after deregistration of a political party publish a notice of the deregistration in the Kenya Gazette.

Effect Of Deregistration Of A Political Party

Where a political party is deregistered under the Political Parties Act, no person should—

  • summon a meeting of members or officers of the political party other than for purposes of winding up the political party or for purposes of challenging the deregistration of the political party;
  • attend or make a person attend a meeting in the capacity of a member or officer of the political party;
  • publish a notice or advertisement relating to a meeting of the political party except for purposes of winding up the political party or for purposes of challenging the deregistration of the political party;
  • invite persons to support the political party;
  • make a contribution or loan to funds held or to be held by or for the benefit of the political party or accept a contribution or loan; or
  • give a guarantee in respect of such funds.

Where a political party that has been deregistered had representatives elected to Parliament, or county assembly, such representatives should continue to serve for the remainder of their term as independents or as members of other political parties.

Where the de-registration of a political party is occasioned by a willful act or willful omission of a person who is a member of Parliament or of a County Assembly, that person should cease to be a member of Parliament or of the County Assembly.

Read also about the process of registration of a political party.