Who Calls For the First Sitting of the Senate and the National Assembly



Who Calls For the First Sitting of the Senate and the National Assembly

On Thursday 8 September, a day shy of a month since Kenyans took to the polls, the 13th parliament, the Senate and the National Assembly, had its first sitting in the House. This followed the notification for the sitting, through a gazette notice, by President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday 5 September.


Article 126 (2) of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 provides that, whenever a new house is elected, the incumbent President, through a gazette notice, shall call for the first sitting. The date of the sitting, according to the Constitution, should not be more than 30 days from the date of the general election. The Constitution also allows for the sitting of either house to be held at any place within the Republic, and such a sitting is not bound by time. That means, the sitting does not have a specific start or ending time and the house can conduct its business until the events of the day are done.


After the notification by the President, the Clerks of the Senate and National Assembly officially communicated the same to the elected representatives, issuing a declaration of vacancies in the offices of the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker in the two houses. This was done on Monday 5 September by the Acting Clerk of the National Assembly, Ms. Serah Kioko and the Clerk of the Senate, Mr. Jeremiah Nyegenye. With this, persons who qualify for the positions of Speaker and Deputy were to collect and submit their nomination papers by 12.30 p.m. on 7 September. 


What Happens During the First Sitting


The Standing Orders of the Senate and the National Assembly have it that the Clerks are to first read the notification of the President as published in the Kenya Gazette. Secondly, the Clerks are to lay the list of the names of the newly elected members on the table. Finally, the Clerks are to administer the Oath or Affirmation of Office in alphabetical order and in the manner prescribed in the Standing Orders. 


After administering the oath of office, the Clerks make arrangements for the elections of the Speakers of the two houses, which take place on the first day of sitting of the new Parliament. 

The Supreme Series

It’s Smokin, Not Smoking!

If you wish to be modest about your accomplishments, then that is well and good. But that isn’t Dr. Smokin Charles Wanjala’s portion, at least going by one of his most spoken about moments of ...

The Guy Who Went to Alliance

Justice Isaac Lenaola isn’t exactly your typical Alliance High School guy, the ones who never tire of reminding you that they went to Alliance. But be that as it may, Isaac Lenaola is still an ...

I Listen Louder

In 1990, for thirty days and on a diet of sugarless porridge, no blankets to shelter him from the cold and no access to a toilet, Justice Mohammed Khadhar Ibrahim—then a young advocate and partner ...

Say Chairperson, Not Chairman!

Before becoming a judge of the Supreme Court of Kenya in June 2012, Susanna Njoki Ndung’u was known for leaving an indelible mark during her stint as a nominated MP between 2002 to 2007. Much ...

If Institutional Memory Was A Person

Can one claim to be a fully formed judge if they lack the ability to throw a rib-cracking salvo or two during judicial proceedings? Maybe not. And so during the reading of the Supreme Court’s ...

The Supreme’s Supremo

Chief Justice Martha Karambu Koome has an almost sacred ritual. Once a month, the soft spoken but firm Chief Justice takes her golf clubs and wanders into one of the golf courses, where she spends ...

I Speak in Algebra

In 2017, Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mbete Mwilu became a viral meme video