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Kenya National Commission on Human Rights KNCHR




Open. Accountable. Responsible



Though a 'Successor in title' Commission, the KNCHR is a fully independent Commission with full powers as conferred under Chapter 15 of the Constitution of Kenya 2010.

Roles and Functions

Furthering the promotion and protection of human rights in Kenya


The KNCHR has 5 Commissioners.




knhrc logo courtesy

The Kenya National Commission on Human Rights KNCHR, was formally known by the same name before the enactment of the Constitution of Kenya 2010, and as the Standing Committee on Human Rights between 1996 and 2003. It is a 'successor in title' Commission created from the constitutional Kenya National Human Rights and Equality Commisson, KNHREC.

The COK2010 is awash with details and specifics on the Bill of Rights, and declares in its preamble, the aspirations of the people of Kenya with regard to their rights:

PREAMBLE: We the people of Kenya RECOGNISING the aspirations of all Kenyans for a government based on the essential values of human rights .......

As an independent Commission, it is the duty of the KNCHR to promote and protect these freedoms, rights and liberties of the people of Kenya. These rights and the attendant mandate to protect them is summarised by Article 249. (1) The objects of the commissions ........ are to— (a) protect the sovereignty of the people; (b) secure the observance by all State organs of democratic values and principles; and (c) promote constitutionalism.




Though a successor Commission, the KNCHR is fully independent and inherits the status and the powers of its 'parent' Commission (the KNHREC) as they are outlined in Chapter 15 - Commissions and Independent Offices of the Constitution of Kenya 2010. (For a generalised discussion of all Constitutional Commissions under Chapter 15, click here.)

These powers are therefore assigned to the KNHRC in the following manner: pursuant to Article 59 of Chapter 4 - The Bill of Rights, Part 5 - The Kenya National Human Rights And Equality Commission; excerpts-

59. (5) If Parliament enacts legislation restructuring the Commission under clause (4)–– ........ (b) each of the successor commissions shall have powers equivalent to the powers of the Commission under this Article; and (c) each successor commission shall be a commission within the meaning of Chapter Fifteen, and shall have the status and powers of a commission under that Chapter.



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