ln the new Constitution of Kenya the executive comprise of:
- The President,
- The Deputy President (The Vice-President has been renamed Deputy President)
- The Cabinet ( Cabinet Ministers will be called Cabinet Secretaries)
NB: The Prime Minister and assistant ministers positions have been scrapped
ln the new Constitution, like in the old, the President is the Head of State and Government and exercises executive authority with the help ofthe Deputy President (Vice-President) and Cabinet Secretaries (Cabinet ministers). He is the Commander-in-Chief of the Kenya Defence Forces and the chairperson of the the National Security Council.
The President shall not hold any other State 0r public office.
Functions of the Kenya President
- The President will address the opening of each newly – elected Parliament.
But unlike in the old law, he must address a special session of Parliament once a year or at any other time.
- The country’s chief executive will also, once every year report, in an address to the nation, on measures taken and progress made in the realisation of the national values and submit a report for debate to the National Assembly on the progress made in fulfilling the international obligations.
- It is also the role of the President to nominate and, with the approval of the National Assembly, appoint the Cabinet Secretaries, the Attorney – General, the Secretary to the Cabinet, Principal Secretaries (Permanent Secretaries), high commissioners, ambassadors and diplomatic and consular representatives.
- The President will chair Cabinet meetings, direct functions of ministries and Government departments.
- The President also has powers to establish offices in the Public Service with the recommendation of the Public Service Commission, receive foreign diplomatic and consular representatives, confer honours, declare a state of emergency; and with the approval of Parliament declare war.
- If petitioned, the Head of State can exercise the power of mercy with the advice of the Advisory Committee by granting free or conditional pardon to a convict, postpone the carrying out of a punishment, substitute a less severe form of punishment; or remit all or part of the punishment.
- The Advisory committee on the Power of Mercy will comprise the Attorney – General, the Cabinet Secretary (Minister) responsible for correctional services (Home Affairs) and at least five other members.
Election of the President:
It will be held on the same day as a General Election of Members of Parliament on the second Tuesday in August of every fifth year.
Qualifications for nomination as a presidential candidate are;
- A citizen by birth, qualified to stand for election nominated by a political party or is an independent candidate and is nominated by not fewer than 2,000 voters from each of majority (24 of the 47) counties.
- A candidate is declared elected as President if he or she receives more than half of all the votes cast and at least 25 per cent of the votes cast in more than half of the counties.
- lf no candidate is elected, afresh election is held within 30 days. ln the second election, the candidates will be those who received the greatest and the second greatest number of votes.
- lf the President-elect dies before assuming office, the Deputy President-elect (who was the Presidents running mate in the election) will be sworn in as acting President and a fresh election held within 60 days of the death of the President-elect. lf the Deputy President-elect dies before assuming office, the office of the Deputy President will be declared vacant when the President takes office.
- If the President-elect and the Deputy President-elect die before assuming office, the Speaker of the National Assembly will act as President and afresh presidential election conducted within 60 days of the deaths.
- The swearing in of the President-elect must be in public before the chief justice or, in the absence of the chief justice, the Deputy Chief justice. This will be on the first Tuesday 14 days after the announcement of presidential election results if no petition has been filed.
- lf a petition is filed, the swearing in will be seven days after the court declares the election valid.
Term of office of President
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The President shall hold office for a term beginning on the swearing in date and ending
when another President is elected and sworn in. A President can not hold office for more than two terms.
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