This article focuses on the qualifications for speaker of the county assembly. Article 178 (1) of the Constitution of Kenya provides that each county assembly shall have a Speaker elected from among persons who are not Members of the County Assembly, as read together with Section 7 of the County Governments (Amendment) Act 2020, Section 25 of the Elections Act, 2011 and standing orders of various county assemblies.
The speaker presides over county assembly sittings and if he/she is absent, the deputy speaker takes over. The deputy speaker is an elected Member of the County Assembly (MCA). If both are absent, then MCAs elect from among themselves an acting speaker to preside over sittings of the county assembly.
Qualifications For Speaker Of The County Assembly
Anyone wishing to be a speaker of the county assembly must meet qualifications under Article 193 of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 and Sections 22 and 25 of the Elections Act 2011. The qualifications include;
- He/she must be a registered voter.
- Should satisfy any educational, moral and ethical requirements as prescribed in the constitution. The educational requirement is a post-secondary school qualification recognised in Kenya, in accordance with Section 22(1) of the Elections Act 2011.
- Be a Kenyan citizen for at least 10 years before the election.
- Should not hold dual citizenship or owe allegiance to a foreign state.
- Be elected in accordance with standing orders of the respective county assemblies, from persons eligible to be elected as Members of County Assembly but are not such members.
An applicant shall be disqualified from being elected as speaker of the county assembly, in accordance with Article 193 of the constitution if;
- He/she is a state or public officer.
- Is of unsound mind
- Is an undischarged bankrupt.
- Is serving a sentence or imprisonment of at least six months.
- Has held office as a member of IEBC within five years before the date of the election.
- Has been found to have misused or abused a state or public office, in accordance with laws of the constitution of Kenya.