Presidents of Kenya
The unicameral assembly consists of 210 members elected to a term of up to 5 years, plus 12 members appointed by the president. The president appoints the vice president and cabinet members from among those elected to the assembly. The attorney general and the speaker are ex-officio members of the National Assembly.
The judiciary is headed by a High Court, consisting of a chief justice and at least 30 High Court judges and judges of Kenya's Court of Appeal (no associate judges), all appointed by the president.
Local administration is divided among 63 rural districts, each headed by a presidentially appointed commissioner. The districts are joined to form seven rural provinces. The Nairobi area has special status and is not included in any district or province. The government supervises administration of districts and provinces.
Since independence, Kenya has maintained remarkable stability despite changes in its political system and crises in neighboring countries. Particularly since the re-emergence of multiparty democracy, Kenyans have enjoyed an increased degree of freedom.
A bipartisan parliamentary reform initiative in the fall of 1997 revised some oppressive laws inherited from the colonial era that had been used to limit freedom of speech and assembly. This significantly improved public freedoms and assembly and made for generally credible national elections in December 1997.
Kenya is now focusing on the succession of President Moi, whose current term expires in December 2002. The government has restricted opposition party activities as the 2002 elections draw near. The elections have been complicated by a stalled constitutional review process and ambiguity about President Moi's intentions regarding a third term in office.
conventional long form: Republic of Kenya
conventional short form: Kenya
former: British East Africa
Data code: KE
Government type: republic
Administrative divisions: 7 provinces and 1 area*:
Central, Coast, Eastern, Nairobi Area*, North Eastern, Nyanza, Rift Valley, Western
National holiday: Independence Day, December 12 (1963)
Constitution: 12 December 1963, amended as a republic 1964; reissued with amendments 1979, 1983, 1986, 1988, 1991, 1992, and 1997
Legal system: based on English common law, tribal law, and Islamic law; judicial review in High Court; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations; constitutional amendment of 1982 making Kenya a de jure one-party state repealed in 1991
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
chief of state: President Daniel Toroitich arap Moi (since 14 October 1978); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Daniel Toroitich arap MOI (since 14 October 1978); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president
elections: president elected by popular vote from among the members of the National Assembly for a five-year term; election last held 29 December 1997 (next to be held by early 2003); vice president appointed by the president
election results: President Daniel Toroitich arap MOI reelected; percent of vote - Daniel T. arap MOI (KANU) 40.6%, Mwai KIBAKI (DP) 31.5%, Raila ODINGA (NDP) 11.1%, Michael WAMALWA (FORD-K) 8.4%, Charity NGILU (SDP) 7.8%
unicameral National Assembly or Bunge (222 seats, 12 appointed by the president, 210 members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 29 December 1997 (next to be held between 1 December 2002 and 30 April 2003)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - KANU 107, FORD-A 1, FORD-K 17, FORD-People 3, DP 39, NDP 21, SDP 15, SAFINA 5, smaller parties 2; seats appointed by the president - KANU 6, FORD-K 1, DP 2, SDP 1, NDP 1, SAFINA 1
Judicial branch: Court of Appeal, chief justice is appointed by the president; High Court
Political parties and leaders: Democratic Party of Kenya or DP [Mwai KIBAKI]; Forum for the Restoration of Democracy-Asili or FORD-A [Martin SHIKUKU, chairman]; Forum for the Restoration of Democracy-Kenya or FORD-K [Michael Kijana WAMALWA]; Forum for the Restoration of Democracy-People or FORD-People [Raymond MATIBA]; Kenya African National Union or KANU [President Daniel Toroitich arap MOI] - the governing party; National Development Party or NDP [Raila ODINGA, president, Dr. Charles MARANGA, secretary general]; SAFINA [Farah MAALIM, chairman, Mghanga MWANDAWIRO, secretary general]; Social Democratic Party or SDP [Anyang N'YANGO, secretary general]
Political pressure groups and leaders: human rights groups; labor unions; Muslim organizations; National Convention Executive Council or NCEC, a proreform coalition of political parties and nongovernment organizations [Kivutha KIBWANA]; Protestant National Council of Churches of Kenya or NCCK [Mutava MUSYIMI]; Roman Catholic and other Christian churches; Supreme Council of Kenyan Muslims or SUPKEM [Shaykh Abdul Gafur al-BUSAIDY, chairman]
International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, C, CCC, EADB, ECA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MINURSO, MONUC, NAM, OAU, OPCW, UN, UNAMSIL, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNIKOM, UNMIBH, UNMIK, UNMOP, UNU, UPU, WCL, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of black (top), red, and green; the red band is edged in white; a large warrior's shield covering crossed spears is superimposed at the center. Colour significance - Black->Our colour, Red->The Blood Shed to gain independence, Green->The richness of our soil, plant life, White-> purity
- See also : Kenya