5 Critical Dates in Uhuru Succession

  • Kenya's transition of power
    President Uhuru Kenyatta (Right) receives the sword of power from former President Mwai Kibaki at the Kasarani Stadium in 2013
  • The Constitution of Kenya 2010 provides guidelines to be followed in the process of electing and swearing in a new president during every election cycle.

    It outlines guidelines that dictate the conduct of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and other stakeholders involved in managing the process of delivering a new presidency.

    These guidelines include specific periods and dates within which activities in the process must be done. Kenyans.co.ke takes a look at some of the key dates ten days to the August 9 polls. 

    The official time for the conclusion of campaigns - August 6

    The IEBC has set the final day of election campaigns for Saturday, August 6, two days before the election date. All political parties are expected to end their campaign activities on this date, paving way for the electorate to decide on the next crop of leaders. 

    IEBC officials in a polling station
    IEBC Official in a polling station assisting voters

    The Kenya Kwanza alliance led by deputy president, William Ruto, is slated to hold a mega rally to cap off its campaigns at the Nyayo National Stadium while Raila Odinga’s Azimio La Umoja will end its campaigns at the Kasarani Stadium. 

    Election Date - August 9

    The election date is set for the second Tuesday of August after every five years. This is a statutory requirement entrenched in Article 136 of the Constitution. 

    An election of the President shall be held on the same day as a General Election of Members of Parliament, being the second Tuesday in August, in every fifth year.”  

    Deadline for IEBC’s announcement of the results - August 16

    The results of a presidential election should be announced within seven days. The electoral commission shall have, within these seven days, completed the tallying of all cast votes and announce the winner on or before August 13.  

    Official deadline for filing a petition against presidential election results - August 23

    The Constitution of Kenya 2010 envisages the possibility of dissatisfaction with the results from a candidate or any party in the presidential election. The jurisdiction of solving disputes in a presidential election is bestowed on the apex court of the land, the Supreme Court. 

    In such an eventuality, the candidate should file a petition at the Supreme Court seven days after the announcement of the final results.

    Supreme Court’s verdict deadline - September 3

    The Constitution stipulates that the Supreme Court should hear and determine a presidential election petition within 14 days. The decision of the Supreme Court is final. 

    “Within fourteen days after the filing of a petition under clause (1), the Supreme Court shall hear and determine the petition and its decision shall be final.”

    Oath of Office

    The date of swearing in the president-elect is dependent on whether or not an election petition is filed. In the event where a no party disputes the outcome, the president-elect will be sworn in on the first Tuesday following fourteen days after the declaration of the results.

    However, if the outcome of the election is disputed - the swearing-in date is set for the seventh day after the determination of the petition by the Supreme Court. The country would have to wait for a longer time to get its fifth president if the August 9 election is nullified as explained below. 

    Repeat elections date - 60 days after Supreme Court verdict

    If the Supreme Court nullifies the election of a president-elect, the constitution states that a fresh election should be held within the next 60 days after the verdict is rendered. 

    “If the Supreme Court determines the election of the president-elect to be invalid, a fresh election shall be held within sixty days after the determination.”

    IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati during the clearance of presidential candidates at the Bomas of Kenya on Monday, June 6, 2022.
    IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati during the clearance of presidential candidates at the Bomas of Kenya on Monday, June 6, 2022.