International Development Law Organization

Kenya

English

Since August 2010, Kenya has been implementing a new Constitution with an expanded Bill of Rights and ambitious government decentralization (devolution) processes. The transferring of a large number of national functions to 47 newly created county governments has strengthened accountability and public service delivery at local levels. Building on notable progress achieved over a relatively short period, efforts continue to align pre-existing laws with the Constitution and to enact new laws to implement its provisions. Particular focus is being placed on legal interventions that will address issues of transparency, gender equality, peace and security, and the climate crisis.

Kenya is a Member Party of IDLO, and since 2010 the organization has collaborated with the institutions responsible for implementing the key provisions of Kenya’s Constitution, particularly relating to the Bill of Rights, land and the environment, devolution, the judiciary, access to justice and representation of the people. A key component of IDLO’s work is advancing gender justice in the country’s courts and institutions, and operationalizing the gender provisions contained in the Constitution.

IDLO also works closely with the Judiciary of Kenya, including on commercial justice reforms, such as the implementation of e-justice solutions and the establishment of Small Claims Courts, which help to streamline and speed up court processes and expand access to justice. IDLO is also providing technical support to the Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) Court, and has helped develop policy and legal frameworks on managing and responding to SGBV.

  An overview of IDLO's work in Kenya

 

Building Climate Resilience in Kenya

Climate change is threatening to reverse Kenya’s progress on poverty reduction and exacerbate economic and social inequality. In order to build resilience and outline a low-carbon approach to development, IDLO has assisted the Kenyan Government in drafting a comprehensive National Climate Change Action Plan 2013-2017. This technical assistance included compiling a Legal Preparedness Assessment Report and establishing a Climate Law Working Group, made up of law students from Kenya’s leading universities.

Gender Reforms in Kenya's Public Service

IDLO is working with the Government of Kenya to advance gender equality across the country and enact gender provisions contained in the Constitution. Since 2013, IDLO has partnered to enhance the capacity of the Government of Kenya to mainstream gender at both the national and county levels. IDLO’s support included strategic policy development, critical legislative review, expert technical advice, and institutional strengthening.

Securing Kenya’s Constitutional Development

While the new Constitution of Kenya, 2010 provides for the right of every Kenyan to access justice, its implementation is vital to strengthen and support the changes required for a better Kenya. IDLO is supporting the Kenyan Government to implement the Constitution in an effective, efficient and sustainable manner, in accordance with international standards and best practices. This is being done with a view to enhancing access to justice for Kenyans, especially for women, children and other vulnerable populations.

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Key Initiatives

  • Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) kill 15 million people between the ages of 30 and 69, and over 86 per cent of these "premature" deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries.The economic impact, including loss of income by people harmed by NCDs, the costs of treatment, and the impacts on families threaten international development. Through regulation and fiscal reforms, countries can promote healthy diets, physical activity, and other initiatives reducing the prevalence and harms of NCDs. 
  • Traditionally under the remit of environmentalists alone, biodiversity has now been recognized in the 2030 Agenda as a key element of global development that should be integrated across all sectors. Kenya’s Constitution includes provisions related to environment and natural resource management, which has given impetus to new laws, policies and other enabling legal instruments at the national and county levels.
  • The Constitution of Kenya requires the Government to facilitate access to justice for all citizens, as it remains a critical pillar for poverty reduction and sustainable development. To this end, IDLO has been supporting the Kenyan judiciary since April 2012 to strengthen its capacity to administer and enhance access to justice for all Kenyans.
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