Article Index




Political Parties System Under the New Constitution




Ideology. Integrity. Issues




All political parties must seek to promote the objectives and principles of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 and the rule of law.


All political parties must adhere to the principals of internal democracy, inclusiveness, equality, non-discrimination within the framework of law.


Every political party in Kenya must be driven by values of honesty, integrity, accountability, transparency, ethics, etc.

Registered Political Parties

Terms of registration essentially spell out the same vision, mission and values for all political parties irrespective of ideology, promise or pledge.




If politics be the pursuit of power, then political parties are the standard means to that power. Political parties exist to provide a common and united platform for like-minded political players to pursue State power and to exercise that power once elections are held. Thus political power can be exercised by the ruling party and coalitions or by the official opposition party and coalitions. Having said that though, the Constitution of Kenya 2010 has made room for the political participation of independent candidates.

As noted in the earlier introduction, the New Constitution has sought to streamline the often-chaotic world of Kenya's political parties. Most political parties in Kenya do not hold a long-term view of politics persuasion. Rather, they remain in a semi-comatose mode for much of the time only to come alive during an election year. Most hinge their survival on a larger-than-life party leader or personality, and have little to show for ideology and mobilization. "....... political parties are mere marketing brands for ethnic mobilisation for votes. They are invariably re-branded as need arises at every general election ....... Thus general elections ....... are essentially an ethnic census; won or lost on the ethnic combinations achieved by influential individual politicians". (Kiriro wa Ngugi, 2012).

New laws that define the playing field for political parties have come into play and will be enforced by the office of the Registrar of Political Parties RPP. Accordingly, all political parties must register anew and fully comply with the Political Parties Act 2011 to qualify for funding and to participate in an election. They must streamline their composition, membership and nomination rules and practices in compliance with the tenets of democracy and good governance. These far-reaching political, civic, and social changes aim to level the political field, expand that field and choice, and transform the content and delivery of political agenda, as well as raise the quality and integrity of the elected. In a nutshell, to set the foundation for a mature and progressive political space. 


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