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The Judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature.

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There was growing concern especially during former president Daniel arap Moi's tenure that the executive was increasingly meddling with the affairs of the judiciary. Kenya has a high degree of corruption according to Transparency International 's Corruption Perception Index CPI , a metric which attempts to gauge the prevalence of public sector corruption in various countries. Following general elections held in , the Constitution of Kenya Review Act designed to pave the way for more comprehensive amendments to the Kenyan constitution was passed by the national parliament.

In December , Kenyans held democratic and open elections, most of which were judged free and fair by international observers. Under the presidency of Mwai Kibaki , the new ruling coalition promised to focus its efforts on generating economic growth, combating corruption, improving education, and rewriting its constitution. A few of these promises have been met. There is free primary education. Under the new constitution and with President Kibaki prohibited by term limits from running for a third term, Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta ran for office.

He won with In December , President Uhuru Kenyatta signed a Security Laws Amendment Bill, which supporters of the law suggested was necessary to guard against armed groups. Opposition politicians, human rights groups, and nine Western countries criticised the security bill, arguing that it infringed on democratic freedoms.

The governments of the United States , the United Kingdom , Germany , and France also collectively issued a press statement cautioning about the law's potential impact. Through the Jubilee Coalition, the Bill was later passed on 19 December in the National Assembly under acrimonious circumstances. Kenya has close ties with its fellow Swahili -speaking neighbours in the African Great Lakes region.

Relations with Uganda and Tanzania are generally strong, as the three nations work toward economic and social integration through common membership in the East African Community. Relations with Somalia have historically been tense, although there has been some military co-ordination against Islamist insurgents. Kenya has good relations with the United Kingdom. With International Criminal Court trial dates scheduled in for both President Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto related to the election aftermath, US president Barack Obama chose not to visit the country during his mid African trip.

The armed forces are regularly deployed in peacekeeping missions around the world. Further, in the aftermath of the national elections of December and the violence that subsequently engulfed the country, a commission of inquiry, the Waki Commission , commended its readiness and adjudged it to "have performed its duty well. Kenya's armed forces, like many government institutions in the country, have been tainted by corruption allegations. Because the operations of the armed forces have been traditionally cloaked by the ubiquitous blanket of "state security", the corruption has been hidden from public view, and thus less subject to public scrutiny and notoriety.

This has changed recently. In what are by Kenyan standards unprecedented revelations, in , credible claims of corruption were made with regard to recruitment [91] and procurement of Armoured Personnel Carriers. Kenya is divided into 47 semi-autonomous counties that are headed by governors. These 47 counties now form the first-order divisions of Kenya. The smallest administrative units in Kenya are called locations. Locations often coincide with electoral wards. Many larger towns consist of several locations.

Each location has a chief, appointed by the state. Constituencies are an electoral subdivision, with each county comprising a whole number of constituencies. An Interim Boundaries commission was formed in year to review the constituencies and in its report, it recommended creation of an additional 80 constituencies.

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Previous to the elections, there were constituencies in Kenya. Homosexual acts are illegal in Kenya and punishable by up to 14 years in prison though the state often turns a blind eye on prosecuting homosexuals. Our culture, our societies don't accept. In the report, the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights KNCHR reported these in their key finding "e ", stating that the forced disappearances and extrajudicial killings appeared to be official policy sanctioned by the political leadership, the Police.

As of [update] , Kenya is usually classified as a frontier market or occasionally an emerging market , but it is not one of the least developed countries. The economy has seen much expansion, seen by strong performance in tourism, higher education and telecommunications , and acceptable [ neutrality is disputed ] post-drought results in agriculture, especially the vital tea sector.

Privatisation of state corporations like the defunct Kenya Post and Telecommunications Company, which resulted in East Africa's most profitable company— Safaricom , has led to their revival because of massive private investment. The World Bank estimated growth of 4. The EAC's objectives include harmonising tariffs and customs regimes, free movement of people, and improving regional infrastructures.

Kenya is East and Central Africa's hub for financial services. As of late July , the system consisted of 43 commercial banks down from 48 in , several non-bank financial institutions , including mortgage companies, four savings and loan associations, and several core foreign-exchange bureaus. Tourism in Kenya is the second-largest source of foreign exchange revenue following agriculture. Other attractions include the wildebeest migration at the Masaai Mara which is considered the 7th wonder of the world, historical mosques and colonial-era forts at Mombasa , Malindi , and Lamu ; the renowned vast scenery like the snow white capped Mount Kenya , the Great Rift Valley ; the tea plantations at Kericho ; the coffee plantations at Thika ; a splendid view of Mt.

Kilimanjaro across the border into Tanzania ; [] and the beaches along the Swahili Coast , in the Indian Ocean. Agriculture is the second largest contributor to Kenya's gross domestic product GDP , after the service sector. The principal cash crops are tea, horticultural produce, and coffee. Horticultural produce and tea are the main growth sectors and the two most valuable of all of Kenya's exports.

The production of major food staples such as corn is subject to sharp weather-related fluctuations. Production downturns periodically necessitate food aid—for example, in aid for 1. Successive projects encouraged the commercialisation of legumes, by stimulating the growth of local seed production and agro-dealer networks for distribution and marketing. The commercialisation of the pigeon pea is now enabling some farmers to buy assets, ranging from mobile phones to productive land and livestock, and is opening pathways for them to move out of poverty. Tea, coffee, sisal, pyrethrum, corn, and wheat are grown in the fertile highlands, one of the most successful agricultural production regions in Africa.

Coconuts , pineapples , cashew nuts , cotton, sugarcane , sisal , and corn are grown in the lower-lying areas. Kenya's irrigation sector is categorized into three organizational types: The smallholder schemes are owned, developed and managed by individuals or groups of farmers operating as water users or self-help groups. Irrigation is carried out on individual or on group farms averaging 0. There are about 3, smallholder irrigation schemes covering a total area of 47, ha.

The country has seven large, centrally managed irrigation schemes, namely Mwea, Bura , Hola , Perkera , West Kano, Bunyala and Ahero covering a total commanded area of 18, ha and averaging 2, ha per scheme. They utilize high technology and produce high-value crops for the export market, especially flowers and vegetables. Kenya is the world's 3rd largest exporter of cut flowers. Industrial activity, concentrated around the three largest urban centres, Nairobi , Mombasa and Kisumu , is dominated by food-processing industries such as grain milling, beer production, and sugarcane crushing, and the fabrication of consumer goods, e.

There is a cement production industry. In addition, a substantial and expanding informal sector commonly referred to as jua kali engages in small-scale manufacturing of household goods, auto parts, and farm implements. The country has an extensive network of paved and unpaved roads.

Kenya's railway system links the nation's ports and major cities, connecting it with neighbouring Uganda. There are 15 airports which have paved runways. The largest share of Kenya's electricity supply comes from geothermal energy [] followed by hydroelectric stations at dams along the upper Tana River , as well as the Turkwel Gorge Dam in the west. A petroleum-fired plant on the coast, geothermal facilities at Olkaria near Nairobi , and electricity imported from Uganda make up the rest of the supply.

Kenya's installed capacity stood at 1, megawatts between and The state-owned Kenya Electricity Generating Company KenGen , established in under the name of Kenya Power Company, handles the generation of electricity, while Kenya Power handles the electricity transmission and distribution system in the country. Shortfalls of electricity occur periodically, when drought reduces water flow. To become energy sufficient, Kenya aims to build a nuclear power plant by Kenya has proven deposits of oil in Turkana and the commercial viability was just discovered.

Tullow Oil estimates Kenya's oil reserves to be around 10 billion barrels. Kenya currently imports all crude petroleum requirements. Kenya, east Africa's largest economy, has no strategic reserves and relies solely on oil marketers' day oil reserves required under industry regulations. Kenyatta was "[a]ccompanied by 60 Kenyan business people [and hoped to] Base Titanium, a subsidiary of Base resources of Australia, shipped its first major consignment of minerals to China.

About 25, tonnes of ilmenite was flagged off the Kenyan coastal town of Kilifi. The first shipment was expected to earn Kenya about Kshs15—20 billion in earnings. In , the Kenyan government unveiled Vision , an economic development programme it hopes will put the country in the same league as the Asian Economic Tigers by the year In , it launched a National Climate Change Action Plan, having acknowledged that omitting climate as a key development issue in Vision was an oversight.

At the launch in March , the Secretary of the Ministry of Planning, National Development and Vision emphasised that climate would be a central issue in the renewed Medium Term Plan that would be launched in the coming months. This would create a direct and robust delivery framework for the Action Plan and ensure climate change is treated as an economy-wide issue. Kenya has proven oil deposits in Turkana County.

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President Mwai Kibaki announced on 26 March that Tullow Oil , an Anglo-Irish oil exploration firm, had struck oil but its commercial viability and subsequent production would take about three years to confirm. Early in Chinese president Hu Jintao signed an oil exploration contract with Kenya, part of a series of deals designed to keep Africa's natural resources flowing to China's rapidly expanding economy.

The deal allowed for China's state-controlled offshore oil and gas company, CNOOC , to prospect for oil in Kenya, which is just beginning to drill its first exploratory wells on the borders of Sudan and the disputed area of North Eastern Province of the border with Somalia and in coastal waters. There are formal estimates of the possible reserves of oil discovered. Child labour is common in Kenya. Most working children are active in agriculture. Most of the prostitutes in Kenya are aged 9— Out of approximately 40 million Kenyans , about 14 million Kenyans are not able to receive financial service through formal loan application service and an additional 12 million Kenyans have no access to financial service institutions at all.

Further, 1 million Kenyans are reliant on informal groups for receiving financial aid. Kenya had a population of approximately 48 million people in January Kenya's capital, Nairobi, is home to Kibera , one of the world's largest slums. The shanty town is believed to house between , [] and 1 million locals. Kenya has a diverse population that includes most major ethnoracial and linguistic groups found in Africa.

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The largest native ethnic groups are the Kikuyu 6,, , Luhya 5,, , Kalenjin 4,, , Luo 4,, , Kamba 3,, , Somalis 3,, , Kisii 2,, , Mijikenda 1,, , Meru 1,, , Turkana , , and Maasai , Kenya's various ethnic groups typically speak their mother tongues within their own communities. The two official languages , English and Swahili , are used in varying degrees of fluency for communication with other populations.

English is widely spoken in commerce, schooling and government. British English is primarily used in Kenya. Additionally, a distinct local dialect, Kenyan English , is used by some communities and individuals in the country, and contains features unique to it that were derived from local Bantu languages , such as Kiswahili and Kikuyu.

Sheng is a Kiswahili-based cant spoken in some urban areas. Primarily consisting of a mixture of Kiswahili and English, it is an example of linguistic code-switching. There are a total of 69 languages spoken in Kenya. Most belong to two broad language families: The Cushitic and Arab ethnic minorities speak languages belonging to the separate Afroasiatic family, with the Indian and European residents speaking languages from the Indo-European family. Orthodox Christianity counts , adherents. Nonreligious Kenyans make up 2. Kenya has one of Africa's largest Hindu populations around , , mostly of Indian origin.

There is also a small Buddhist community. Kenya's private sector is one of the most advanced and dynamic in Sub-Saharan Africa. Private healthcare businesses and companies are the main health care providers in the country even for the nation's poorest people. The private health sector is larger and more easily accessible than both the public and the non-profit health sectors in terms of facilities and personnel.

According to a World Bank report, nearly half of the poorest 20 percent of Kenyans use a private health facility when a child is sick. Private health facilities are largely preferred for their strong brands, value-addition and focused patient-centered care in contrast to the minimalist evidence-based care provided in public health facilities. Private health facilities are diverse and cater for all economic groups. Hospitals such as the Aga Khan Hospital and the Mombasa Hospital are comparable to many preferred hospitals in the developed world but are expensive and accessible only to the rich and the insured.

Many affordable and low-cost private medical institutions and clinics exist and are easily accessible to ordinary and middle-class residents but are commonly unregistered and unlicensed and run by similarly unregistered and unlicensed personnel posing a grave danger to the public. All registered medical facilities are subjected to regular supervisory and supportive visits from a joint multi-cadre team of health officials from the county government and national regulatory bodies in order to meet the legal threshold of the Fair Administrative Action Act, and may choose to undergo additional supportive and quality assurance and improvement processes by operating under a social franchise such as the joint government-donor funded Tunza Family Network.

The control of medical practice by laymen through limited liability companies, county governments and other artificial legal entities is widespread and largely tolerated unlike other countries where medical affairs are strictly handled by medically qualified administrators. The health sector and health facilities are not protected by any special laws and are prone to mismanagement with health workers frequently being subjected to verbal, emotional and physical attacks by patients and administrators alike.

The public health sector consists of community-based level I services which are run by community health workers, dispensaries level II facilities which are run by nurses, health centers level III facilities which are run by clinical officers, sub-county hospitals level IV facilities which may be run by a clinical officer or a medical officer, county hospitals level V facilities which may be run by a medical officer or a medical practitioner, and national referral hospitals level VI facilities which are run by fully qualified medical practitioners consultants and sub-specialists.

Nurses are by far the largest group of front-line health care providers in all sectors followed by clinical officers , medical officers and medical practitioners. According to the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics , in there were 65, qualified nurses registered in the country; 8, clinical officers and 7, doctors for the population of 43 million people These figures from official registers include those who have died or left the profession hence the actual number of these workers may be lower.

Traditional healers Herbalists , witch doctors and faith healers are readily available, trusted and widely consulted as practitioners of first or last choice by both rural and urban dwellers. Despite major achievements in the health sector, Kenya still faces many challenges. The life expectancy estimate has dropped to approximately 55 years in —five years below levels. Diseases of poverty directly correlate with a country's economic performance and wealth distribution: Half of Kenyans live below the poverty level.

According to estimates, HIV prevalence is about 6. The total fertility rate in Kenya is estimated to be 4. By colonial land alienation, women lost access and control of land. Children attend nursery school, or kindergarten in the private sector until they are five years old.

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  8. This lasts one to three years KG1, KG2 and KG3 and is financed privately because there has been no government policy regarding it until recently. Basic formal education starts at age six years and lasts 12 years consisting of eight years in primary school and four years in high school or secondary school. Those who complete high school can join a polytechnic or other technical college and study for three years, or proceed directly to the university and study for four years. Graduates from the polytechnics and colleges can then join the workforce and later obtain a specialized higher diploma qualification after a further one to two years of training, or join the university—usually in the second or third year of their respective course.

    The higher diploma is accepted by many employers in place of a bachelor's degree and direct or accelerated admission to post-graduate studies is possible in some universities. Public universities in Kenya are highly commercialized institutions and only a small fraction of qualified high school graduates are admitted on limited government-sponsorship into programs of their choice. Most are admitted into the social sciences, which are cheap to run, or as self-sponsored students paying the full cost of their studies.

    Most qualified students who miss out opt for middle-level diploma programs in public or private universities, colleges, and polytechnics. Preschool, which targets children from age three to five, is an integral component of the education system and is a key requirement for admission to Standard One First Grade. At the end of primary education, pupils sit the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education KCPE , which determines those who proceed to secondary school or vocational training.

    The result of this examination is needed for placement at secondary school. Students sit examinations in eight subjects of their choosing. However, English, Kiswahili and mathematics are compulsory subjects. Other than the public schools, there are many private schools, mainly in urban areas. Similarly, there are a number of international schools catering to various overseas educational systems. Despite its impressive commercial approach and interests in the country, Kenya's academia and higher education system is notoriously rigid and disconnected from the needs of the local labour market and is widely blamed for the high number of unemployable and "half-baked" university graduates who struggle to fit in the modern workplace.

    The culture of Kenya consists of multiple traditions. Kenya has no single prominent culture that identifies it. It instead consists of the various cultures of the country's different communities. Notable populations include the Swahili on the coast, several other Bantu communities in the central and western regions, and Nilotic communities in the northwest. The Maasai culture is well known to tourism, despite constituting a relatively small part of Kenya's population.

    They are renowned for their elaborate upper body adornment and jewellery. Kenya has a number of media outlets that broadcast domestically and globally. They cover news, business, sports and entertainment. Popular Kenyan newspapers include:. The story details the effects of the Mau Mau on the lives of Kenyans. Its combination of themes— colonialism , education, and love—helped to make it one of the best-known novels in Africa.

    It is the fictional memoir of a Kenyan of Indian heritage and his family as they adjust to the changing political climates in colonial and post-colonial Kenya. Since , the literary journal Kwani? Additionally, Kenya has also been nurturing emerging versatile authors such as Paul Kipchumba Kipwendui, Kibiwott who demonstrate pan-African outlook see Africa in China's 21st Century: In Search of a Strategy Kenya has a diverse assortment of popular music forms, in addition to multiple types of folk music based on the variety over 40 regional languages.

    The drums are the most dominant instrument in popular Kenyan music. Drum beats are very complex and include both native rhythm and imported ones, especially the Congolese cavacha rhythm. Popular Kenyan music usually involves the interplay of multiple parts, and more recently, showy guitar solos as well. There are also a number of local hip-hop artists, including Jua Cali and afro-pop bands such as Sauti Sol. Lyrics are most often in Kiswahili or English. There is also some emerging aspect of Lingala borrowed from Congolese musicians. Lyrics are also written in local languages.

    Urban radio generally only plays English music, though there also exist a number of vernacular radio stations. Zilizopendwa is a genre of local urban music that was recorded in the s, 70s and 80s by musicians such as Daudi Kabaka , Fadhili William and Sukuma Bin Ongaro , and is particularly revered and enjoyed by older people—having been popularised by the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation's Kiswahili service formerly called Voice of Kenya or VOK.

    The isukuti is a vigorous dance performed by the Luhya sub-tribes to the beat of a traditional drum called the Isukuti during many occasions such as the birth of a child, marriage and funerals. Additionally, Kenya has a growing Christian gospel music scene. Prominent local gospel musicians include the Kenyan Boys Choir. Benga music has been popular since the late s, especially in the area around Lake Victoria. The word benga is occasionally used to refer to any kind of pop music. Bass, guitar and percussion are the usual instruments. Kenya is active in several sports, among them cricket , rallying , football , rugby union and boxing.

    Kenyan athletes particularly Kalenjin continue to dominate the world of distance running, although competition from Morocco and Ethiopia has reduced this supremacy. Kenya's best-known athletes included the four-time women's Boston Marathon winner and two-time world champion Catherine Ndereba , m world record holder David Rudisha , former Marathon world record-holder Paul Tergat , and John Ngugi. Kenya won several medals during the Beijing Olympics, six gold, four silver and four bronze, making it Africa's most successful nation in the Olympics.

    Retired Olympic and Commonwealth Games champion Kipchoge Keino helped usher in Kenya's ongoing distance dynasty in the s and was followed by Commonwealth Champion Henry Rono 's spectacular string of world record performances. Lately, there has been controversy in Kenyan athletics circles, with the defection of a number of Kenyan athletes to represent other countries, chiefly Bahrain and Qatar.

    Kenya has been a dominant force in women's volleyball within Africa, with both the clubs and the national team winning various continental championships in the past decade. Cricket is another popular sport, also ranking as the most successful team sport.

    Kenya has competed in the Cricket World Cup since They upset some of the world's best teams and reached the semi-finals of the tournament. Their current captain is Rakep Patel. Kenya is represented by Lucas Onyango as a professional rugby league player who plays with the English club Oldham. However, its dominance has been eroded by wrangles within the now defunct Kenya Football Federation , [] leading to a suspension by FIFA which was lifted in March In the motor rallying arena, Kenya is home to the world-famous Safari Rally , commonly acknowledged as one of the toughest rallies in the world.

    Although the rally still runs annually as part of the Africa rally championship, the organisers are hoping to be allowed to rejoin the World Rally championship in the next couple of years. Nairobi has hosted several major continental sports events, including the FIBA Africa Championship where Kenya's national basketball team finished in the top four, its best performance to date. Kenyans generally have three meals in a day—breakfast in the morning kiamsha kinywa , lunch in the afternoon chakula cha mchana and supper in the evening chakula cha jioni or known simply as "chajio". Breakfast is usually tea or porridge with bread, chapati , mahamri , boiled sweet potatoes or yams.

    Githeri is a common lunch time dish in many households while Ugali with vegetables, sour milk Mursik , meat, fish or any other stew is generally eaten by much of the population for lunch or supper. Regional variations and dishes also exist. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article needs to be updated. Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. For other uses, see Kenya disambiguation. Jamhuri ya Kenya Swahili. Swahili culture and Sultanate of Zanzibar.

    This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. December Learn how and when to remove this template message. Wildlife of Kenya and Environmental issues in Kenya. Kenyan general election, and Kenyan local elections, Foreign relations of Kenya. Counties of Kenya and Divisions of Kenya. List of cities and towns in Kenya by population. Kenya portal Geography of Kenya portal Africa portal.

    Retrieved 28 May Population by sex, rate of population increase, surface area and density" PDF. United Nations Statistics Division. Retrieved 4 September Archived from the original PDF on 10 August Retrieved 22 May Retrieved 26 July United Nations Development Programme. Retrieved 14 September A Handbook for Expatriates. Kenya country case study" PDF. Retrieved 23 May Dar es Salaam, Tanzania: Mkuki na Nyota Publishers. Retrieved 13 May The Brade Travel Guide. Soul singles like you.

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