Introduction to Kenya Law

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What is Law?


Several definitions have been put forward to explain what law is. Generally, law is any set of rules that guide the conduct of individuals/groups in a given set up and is enforced by those in authority. They include the Constitution, Acts of Parliament and/or rules. Law may start from the family and community levels, to national and international levels.

At the family level, there are rules and/or laws that guide the behavior of the members for purposes of ensuring cohesiveness. For example, it may be the rule that the father is the head of the house or that all children must be home before dark. At the comunity level, there may be rules for example stating that a certain person is the head of the village or that youth must always be respectful to the elderly.

At the national level, laws are mainly agreed upon through legislative processes/organs (parliament) and include matters related to how people will be governed. National laws are usually passed by representatives of the people such as Members of National Assembly and Senate.


Sources of Law


Laws  that  govern  its operations.  These  laws are found in different sources. The sources are classified into primary and secondary sources. The primary sources of Kenyan law are:

  • The Constitution.
  • Acts of Parliament.

The secondary sources of Kenyan law are

  • By laws (County laws).
  • Religious books.
  • African customary laws.
  • Precedents

The body vested with the responsibility of making laws in Kenya is the parliament which consists of the senate and the national assembly.