Features of Constitution1
|Is there a constitution?||Yes|
|Does the constitution provide for freedom of religion?||Yes|
|Last Amended||not amended|
|Source||Centre for Human Rights (University of Pretoria)|
|Translation||Original was written in English|
|Current as of||May 11, 2011|
Constitution Excerpts (clauses that reference religion)2
We the people of Kenya--
ACKNOWLEDGING the supremacy of the Almighty God of all creation:
HONORING those who heroically struggled to bring freedom and justice to our land:
PROUD of our ethnic, cultural and religious diversity, and determined to live in peace and unity as one indivisible sovereign nation:
…ADOPT, ENACT and give this Constitution to ourselves and to our future generations. GOD BLESS KENYA
Article 21: Implementation of rights and fundamental freedoms
…(3) All State organs and all public officers have the duty to address the needs of vulnerable groups within society, including women, older members of society, persons with disabilities, children, youth, members of minority or marginalized communities, and members of particular ethnic, religious or cultural communities.
Article 24: Limitation of rights and fundamental freedoms
…(4) The provisions of this Chapter on equality shall be qualified to the extent strictly necessary for the application of Muslim law before the Kadhis’ courts, to persons who profess the Muslim religion, in matters relating to personal status, marriage, divorce and inheritance.
Article 27: Equality and freedom from discrimination
…(4) The State shall not discriminate directly or indirectly against any person on any ground, including race, sex, pregnancy, marital status, health status, ethnic or social origin, color, age, disability, religion, conscience, belief, culture, dress, language or birth.
Article 32: Freedom of conscience, religion, belief and opinion
(1) Every person has the right to freedom of conscience, religion, thought, belief and opinion.
(2) Every person has the right, either individually or in community with others, in public or in private, to manifest any religion or belief through worship, practice, teaching or observance, including observance of a day of worship.
(3) A person may not be denied access to any institution, employment or facility, or the enjoyment of any right, because of the person’s belief or religion.
(4) A person shall not be compelled to act, or engage in any act, that is contrary to the person’s belief or religion.
Article 45: Family
…(4) Parliament shall enact legislation that recognizes—
(a) marriages concluded under any tradition, or system of religious, personal or family law; and
(b) any system of personal and family law under any tradition, or adhered to by persons professing a particular religion,
to the extent that any such marriages or systems of law are consistent with this Constitution.
Article 91: Basic requirements for political parties
…(2) A political party shall not—
(a) be founded on a religious, linguistic, racial, ethnic, gender or regional basis or seek to engage in advocacy of hatred on any such basis;
Article 169: Subordinate courts
(1) The subordinate courts are—
(a) the Magistrates courts; (b) the Kadhis’ courts;
(c) the Courts Martial; and
(d) any other court or local tribunal as may be established by an Act of Parliament, other than the courts established as required by Article 162(2).
(2) Parliament shall enact legislation conferring jurisdiction, functions and powers on the courts established under clause (1).
Article 170: Kadhis’ Courts
(1) There shall be a Chief Kadhi and such number, being not fewer than three, of other Kadhis as may be prescribed under an Act of Parliament.
(2) A person shall not be qualified to be appointed to hold or act in the office of Kadhi unless the person—
(a) professes the Muslim religion; and
(b) possesses such knowledge of the Muslim law applicable to any sects of Muslims as qualifies the person, in the opinion of the Judicial Service Commission, to hold a Kadhis’ court.
(3) Parliament shall establish Kadhis’ courts, each of which shall have the jurisdiction and powers conferred on it by legislation, subject to clause (5).
(4) The Chief Kadhi and the other Kadhis, or the Chief Kadhi and such of the other Kadhis (not being fewer than three in number) as may be prescribed under an Act of Parliament, shall each be empowered to hold a Kadhis’ court having jurisdiction within Kenya.
(5) The jurisdiction of a Kadhis’ court shall be limited to the determination of questions of Muslim law relating to personal status, marriage, divorce or inheritance in proceedings in which all the parties profess the Muslim religion and submit to the jurisdiction of the Kadhis’ courts.
Second Schedule: National Symbols
(b) The National Anthem
O God of all creation
Bless this our land and nation
Justice be our shield and defender
May we dwell in unity
Peace and liberty
Plenty be found within our borders
Third Schedule: National Oaths and Affirmations
Oath or solemn affirmation of allegiance of the President/Acting President and the Deputy President
I, ________, in full realization of the high calling I assume as President/Acting President/ Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya, do swear/solemnly affirm that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to the Republic of Kenya; that I will obey, preserve, protect and defend this Constitution of Kenya, as by law established, and all other laws of the Republic; and that I will protect and uphold the sovereignty, integrity and dignity of the people of Kenya. (In the case of an oath–– So help me God.)
Oath or solemn affirmation of due execution of office for the President/Acting President
I, ________, swear/solemnly affirm that I will truly and diligently serve the people and the Republic of Kenya in the office of the President/ Acting President of the Republic of Kenya; that I will diligently discharge my duties and perform my functions in the Office of President/Acting President of the Republic of Kenya; and I will do justice to all in accordance with this Constitution, as by law established, and the laws of Kenya, without fear, favor, affection or ill-will. (In the case of an oath––So help me God.)
Oath or solemn affirmation of due execution of office for the Deputy President
I, ________, do swear/solemnly affirm that I will always truly and diligently serve the people and the Republic of Kenya in the office of the Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya; that I will diligently discharge my duties and perform my functions in the said office, to the best of my judgment; that I will at all times, when so required, faithfully and truly give my counsel and advice to the President of the Republic of Kenya; that I will do justice to all without fear, favor, affection or ill-will; and that I will not directly or indirectly reveal such matters as shall come to my knowledge in the discharge of my duties and committed to my secrecy. (In the case of an oath–– So help me God.)
Oath or solemn affirmation of due execution of office for a Cabinet Secretary
I, ________, being appointed a Cabinet Secretary of Kenya, do swear/solemnly affirm that I will at all times be faithful to the Republic of Kenya; that I will obey, respect and uphold this Constitution of Kenya and all other laws of the Republic; that I will well and truly serve the people and the Republic of Kenya in the Office of a Cabinet Secretary; that I undertake to hold my office as Cabinet Secretary with honor and dignity; that I will be a true and faithful counselor to the President for the good management of the public affairs of the Republic of Kenya; that I will not divulge directly or indirectly such matters as shall come to my knowledge in the discharge of my duties and committed to my secrecy except as may be required for the due discharge of my duties as Cabinet Secretary; and that I will perform the functions of my office conscientiously and to the best of my ability. (In the case of an oath–– So help me God.).
Oath or solemn affirmation of due execution of office for Secretary to the Cabinet/A Principal Secretary
I, ________, being called on to exercise the functions of Secretary to the Cabinet /a Principal Secretary, do swear/solemnly affirm that, except with the authority of the President, I will not directly or indirectly reveal the nature or contents of any business, proceedings or document of the Cabinet committed to my secrecy, except as may be required for the due discharge of my duties as Secretary to the Cabinet /such Principal Secretary. (In the case of an oath–– So help me God.)
Oaths for the Chief Justice/President of the Supreme Court, Judges of the Supreme Court, Judges of the Court of Appeal and Judges of the High Court.
I, ________, (The Chief Justice /President of the Supreme Court, a judge of the Supreme Court, a judge of the Court of Appeal, a judge of the High Court) do (swear in the name of the Almighty God)/(solemnly affirm) to diligently serve the people and the Republic of Kenya and to impartially do Justice in accordance with this Constitution as by law established, and the laws and customs of the Republic, without any fear, favor, bias, affection, ill-will, prejudice or any political, religious or other influence. In the exercise of the judicial functions entrusted to me, I will at all times, and to the best of my knowledge and ability, protect, administer and defend this Constitution with a view to upholding the dignity and the respect for the judiciary and the judicial system of Kenya and promoting fairness, independence, competence and integrity within it. (So help me God.)
Oath/affirmation of Member of Parliament (Senate/National Assembly)
I, ________, having been elected a member of the Senate/National Assembly do swear (in the name of the Almighty God) (solemnly affirm) that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the People and the Republic of Kenya; that I will obey, respect, uphold, preserve, protect and defend this Constitution of the Republic of Kenya; and that I will faithfully and conscientiously discharge the duties of a member of Parliament. (So help me God).
Oath for Speaker/Deputy Speaker of the Senate/National Assembly
I, ________, having been elected as Speaker/Deputy Speaker of the Senate/ National Assembly do swear (in the name of the Almighty God) (solemnly affirm) that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the people and the Republic of Kenya; that I will faithfully and conscientiously discharge my duties as Speaker/Deputy Speaker of the Senate/National Assembly; that I will obey, respect, uphold, preserve, protect and defend this Constitution of the Republic of Kenya; and that I will do right to all manner of persons in accordance with this Constitution of Kenya and the laws and conventions of Parliament without fear or favor, affection or ill will (So help me God).
Fourth Schedule: Distribution of Functions Between the National Government and the County Governments
Part 1 – National Government
…4. The relationship between religion and state.
1. Data under the "Features of Constitution" heading are drawn from coding of the U.S. State Department's 2008 International Religious Freedom Reports conducted by researchers at the Association of Religion Data Archives. The article by Brian Grim and Roger Finke describes the coding of the International Religious Freedom reports. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. Used with permission.
2. The constitutional excerpts shown above are reproduced from the websites given in the "Source" field; the links to these websites were active as of May 2011. Where the constitutional text shown on these websites was provided in a language other than English, this text was translated to English by ARDA staff with assistance from web-based translation utilities such as Google Translate and Yahoo! Babel Fish. Constitutional text was converted to American English where applicable. Constitutional clauses were judged to contain religious content based largely on the standards used in the construction of the Religion and State Constitutions Dataset collected by Jonathan Fox. Emphases were added to the text by ARDA staff to highlight religious content in articles that also contain content that does not pertain to matters of religion. The data on this page were correct to the best of the knowledge of the ARDA as of the date listed in the "Current as of" field shown above. Please contact us at email@example.com if you are aware of any incorrect information provided on this page.