Requirements to Hold a Public Office in Kenya

Public office

According to the Constitution, a public office means an office in the national government, a county government or the public service which is the collectivity of all individuals, other than State officers, performing a function within a State organ, if the remuneration and benefits of the office are payable directly from the Consolidated Fund or directly out of money provided by Parliament.

A public office is held by the public officers who are all government employees, including but not limiting administrators in state agencies, teachers in public schools, nurses and doctors in public hospitals. Although State officers are also public officers, there are special provisions for State officers that only apply to them and not to all public officers


  • Must be a Kenyan citizen who has become of age to hold a public office
  • Must have the right academic qualifications and experience to hold a public office.
  • Must be legally elected or appointed to office and exercises governmental functions by the Public Service Commission of Kenya which is an Independent government Commission established under the Constitution of Kenya to manage human resources in the Kenya Civil Service and the Local Authorities.
  • Must demonstrate the ability to carry out his duties and ensure that the services that he provides are provided efficiently and honestly in a way that maintains public confidence in the integrity of his office.
  • Must be able to carry out his duties in accordance with the law,  shall not violate the rights and freedoms of any person
  •  Must not use his office to improperly enrich himself or others, except when the person has a contractual or similar relationship with the public officer’s organization or carries on regulated activities with respect to which the public officer’s organization has a role
  •  Must demonstrate the ability to use his best efforts to avoid being in a position in which his personal interests conflict with his official duties.
  • Must not in any manner that may be detrimental to the security interests of Kenya, be an agent for, or further the interests of, a foreign government, organization or individual.
  •  Must be able to take all reasonable steps to ensure that property that is entrusted to his care is adequately protected and not misused or misappropriated.
  •  Must not engage in political activity that may compromise or be seen to compromise the political neutrality of his office, except if he is a member of the National Assembly or a councilor of a local authority.
  • Once every two years as prescribed by section 27, submit to the responsible Commission for the public officer a declaration of the income, assets, and liabilities of himself, his spouse or spouses and his dependent children under the age of 18 years.
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