Requirements and Qualifications for the Position of a Senator in Kenya. The Senate is the upper house of the Parliament of Kenya. The Senate was first established as part of Kenya’s 1963 Constitution. After being abolished in 1966, the Senate was re-established by the 2010 Constitution.
Kenya’s 1963 Constitution established a Senate that consisted of 41 senators elected for six years, with one-third of the members retiring every two years. Timothy Chokwe served as the first speaker of the Senate. The Senate was abolished in 1966, when its membership was combined with that of the House of Representatives to form a unicameral legislature, the National Assembly. Requirements and Qualifications for the Position of a Senator
The 2013 Kenya Senate elections took place on 4 March 2013. Under the new constitution, which was passed during the 2010 referendum, the 2013 general election was the first to include the election of Senators representing the 47 newly created counties. They were also the first general elections run by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission. According to their share of elected seats, the political parties nominated an additional 16 women. Additional nominations were made for two members representing the youth and two members representing persons with disabilities. The speaker, who is an ex officio member, was elected by the senators sworn in on the first sitting of the Senate.
Powers of the Senate in Kenya
The powers and role of the Senate in Kenya are as follows:
- Empowered to represent the interests of the counties and their governments
- Participates in law-making by considering, debating and approving bills concerning counties
- Determines allocation of national revenue among counties.
- Has powers of impeachment over the president, deputy president, county governor, and deputy governors
Qualifications for the Position of a Senator in Kenya:
- Must have been a Kenyan citizen for at least 10 years before the election;
- Must not owe allegiance to a foreign state;
- Must be a registered voter;
- Is nominated by a Political Party or is an independent candidate;
- Must meet the statutory moral and ethical requirements under the Leadership and Integrity Act;
- Must not be a public officer or acting in any State of public office other than a Member of Parliament;
- Must not hold dual citizenship unless citizenship of the other country has been obtained by operation of law without capacity to opt out;
- Must not be an undischarged bankrupt;
- Must not be a person of unsound mind;
- Must not be subject to a sentence of imprisonment of at least six months from the date of registration of candidates or date of elections;
- Must not have been found to have abused or misused state or public office or contravened Chapter Six of the Constitution; and
- Must not have been dismissed or removed from public office for contravening the provisions of Articles 75, 76, 77 and 78 of the Constitution
Requirements for the Position of a Senator in Kenya:
The Candidate must submit the following documents to the Commission during the Commission Nomination:
- A copy of a National Identity Card/valid Passport (the document used by the candidate to register as a voter)
- A Passport size photograph with white background submitted in hard and soft copy.
- If a Party Candidate, a Nomination Certificate from a fully registered political party nominating the candidate, duly signed by an authorized official of the party
- A duly signed and dated Code of Conduct (Second Schedule of the Elections Act, 2011)
- A duly filled Commission Nomination Form, including an original Statutory Declaration Form for purposes of nomination (Regulation 18(3) Elections (General) Regulations, 2012) and an original Self-Declaration Form (Regulation 46 of Elections (General) Regulations, 2012)
- Nomination fees in a Banker’s Cheque payable to IEBC:
- 50,000 for candidates
- Kshs. 25,000 for a candidate who is a youth, a woman or a person with a disability
Requirements and Qualifications for the Position of a Senator in Kenya For an Independent Candidate Senatorial Post
- A Clearance Certificate from the Registrar of Political Parties certifying that the person was not a member of any political party for the last 3 months before the elections;(Regulation 15(a) (General) Regulations, 2012
- An electronic and a printed copy soft and a hard copy of a list of at least 2000 supporters in the prescribed form, submitted to the Commission.
- A duly filled Form of Intention to Contest submitted to the Commission in the prescribed form,
- A symbol the candidate intends to use during the election, which has been approved by the Commission
- Establish and maintain a functioning office in the respective electoral area where the candidate is contesting, which must be available for inspection by the Commission at least 45 days before the elections. The address, including the physical address of the office must be communicated to the Commission.
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