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Elective Positions for the National Government in Kenya

The elective positions for the national government in Kenya involve electing individuals who represent the people at the national level. Article 1 of the Constitution of Kenya stipulates that all sovereign power belongs to the people of Kenya.

The people may exercise their sovereign power either directly or through their democratically elected representatives.

Therefore, Kenya being a representative (or indirect) democracy, Kenyans elect representatives to the national government to represent their interests. The elective positions for the national government in Kenya are in parliament and the national executive.

The people of the Republic of Kenya delegate their sovereign power to these representatives at the national level. These representatives, in turn, exercise the people’s sovereign power at the national level.

elective positions for the national government

The elective positions for the national government in Kenya are the:

1. The Executive

The presidency consists of the elective position for the executive arm of government. As stated, the presidency consists of:

The Deputy President is the President’s running mate. The Presidency is the highest office in the country. People elect the President and the Deputy President on a single (or joint) ticket.

To qualify for the Presidency in Kenya, you must:

  • be a Kenyan citizen by birth;
  • not hold dual citizenship (unless, according to IEBC, the citizenship of the other country has been obtained by operation of law without the capacity to opt-out);
  • not owe allegiance to a foreign state;
  • be qualified to stand for election as a member of Parliament;
  • be a registered voter;
  • be a holder of a degree from a university recognized in Kenya;
  • be nominated by a political party or stand as an independent candidate.
  • not be a public officer or acting in any State or public office other than, President, Deputy President or Member of Parliament;
  • meet the moral and ethical requirements under the Leadership and Integrity Act;
  • not be an undischarged bankrupt;
  • not be a person of unsound mind;
  • not be subject to a sentence of imprisonment of at least six months from the date of registration of candidates or date of elections;
  • not have been found to have abused or misused state or public office or contravened Chapter Six of the Constitution; and
  • not have been dismissed or removed from public office for contravening the provisions of Articles 75, 76, 77 and 78 of the Constitution.

The minimum age limit to run for president in Kenya is 18 years. The Kenyan Constitution does not have an upper presidential age limit.

To learn more about the presidency as an elective position, see the qualifications for the position of the presidency in Kenya.

2. The Legislature (Parliament)

Parliament in Kenya is bicameral consisting of the Senate and the National Assembly. The Members of the Senate (Senators) operate in the Senate while the Members of the National Assembly and Women County Representatives operate in the National Assembly.

The Members of the National Assembly, Members of the Senate and Women County Representatives are collectively known as Members of Parliament (MPs).

To qualify as a candidate for the position of a Member of Parliament in Kenya, you must:

  • be a Kenyan citizen for at least 10 years before the election;
  • not hold dual citizenship (unless, according to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), the citizenship of the other country has been obtained by operation of law without the capacity to opt-out);
  • not owe allegiance to a foreign state;
  • be a registered voter;
  • be nominated by a political party or is an independent candidate.
  • meet the statutory moral and ethical requirements under the Leadership and Integrity Act;
  • not be a public officer or acting in any State of public office other than a Member of Parliament;
  • not be an undischarged bankrupt;
  • not be a person of unsound mind;
  • not be subject to a sentence of imprisonment of at least six months from the date of registration of candidates or date of elections;
  • not have been found to have abused or misused state or public office or contravened Chapter Six of the Constitution; and
  • not have been dismissed or removed from public office for contravening the provisions of Articles 75, 76, 77 and 78 of the Constitution

To qualify for the position of a member of parliament in Kenya, you must also be at least 18 years of age.

For more about a Member of Parliament as an elective position, refer to the following articles:

A Member of Parliament (MP) is eligible for election for a five-year term and can be re-elected as many times as possible since there are no fixed term limits for MPs in Kenya.

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Gĩthĩnji is the founder of afrocave.com. He is passionate about politics and governance, public finance management and cycling.@Afrophi