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On 4 March 2013 general elections will be held in Kenya. The last elections, held in December 2007, were followed by post-election violence that killed over 1,100 people, injured 3,500 and displaced 600,000. For further information please contact Mediterranean Basin Team Leader Trista Guertin at

Corruption Perceptions Index (2012)

The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) reflects how corrupt public sectors are seen to be, incorporating the informed views of analysts, businesspeople and experts in each country. In 2012, Kenya ranked 139th out of 176 countries, with a score of 27 (0 reflecting a perception of highly corrupt and 100 very clean).

Source: Transparency International

Freedom of the Press (2012)

Freedom House conducts an annual survey of media independence in 197 countries and territories. The annual index contains the most comprehensive information on global media freedom, assessing the degree of print, broadcast, and internet freedom in every country. It provides numerical rankings and rates each country's media as "Free," "Partly Free," or "Not Free." For Freedom of the Press Index, Freedom House ranked Kenya as "Partly Free", and placed of 52 out of 197.

Source: Freedom House

Global Competitiveness(2012-2013)

The Global Competitiveness Report, published by the World Economic Forum, assesses the competitiveness landscape of 144 economies, providing insight into the drivers of their productivity and prosperity. Kenya ranks 106 out of 144 countries exxamined in the study.

Source: World Economic Forum

Human Development Index (2011)

The Human Development Index (HDI) is a composite statistic of life expectancy, education, and income indices to rank countries into four tiers of human development. It is published annually by the United Nations Development Programme. In 2011, Kenya ranked 143 out of 187 countries (1 most developed - 187 least developed).

Source: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Index of Economic Freedom (2013)

Economic freedom is the fundamental right of every human to control his or her own labor and property. Index of Economic Freedom measures ten components of economic freedom, assigning a grade in each using a scale from 0 to 100, where 100 represents the maximum freedom. The ten economic freedoms are grouped into four broad categories or pillars of economic freedom: Rule of law, limited government, regulatory efficiency and open markets. In this index, Kenya ranks 114 out of 177 countries with a 55.9 score, which places it under “mostly unfree” category.

Source: Heritage Foundation

Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index (2012)

The BTI publishes two rankings: The Status Index ranks the countries according to their state of democracy and market economy as of spring 2011. The Management Index ranks the countries according to their leadership’s political management performance between 2009 and 2011. Kenya Ranks 68 and 80, respectively, in these two indices.

Source: Bertelsmann Stiftung Foundation




10-May-13 Kenya Asks UN to Halt ICC Case Against Kenyatta Kenya's government has asked the UN Security Council to halt the trials of President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy at the International Criminal Court. The newly elected leaders deny allegations of orchestrating violence after the disputed 2007 election. The letter, sent last week, says the prosecutions are "neither impartial nor independent" and could destabilise Kenya. Africa Press
26-Apr-13 What's Next for Kenya and the ICC? Kenyatta's election as president of Kenya could have important implications for the ICC process as well as Kenya's international relations. Since Kenyatta was sworn in as Kenya's fourth president on 9 April, the question on everybody's lips has been whether the richest - and now most powerful - man in Kenya will keep his date with the International Criminal Court (ICC). Star
26-Apr-13 Kenya: Women Get Six Cabinet Positions So Far Women have taken some of the most powerful Cabinet positions in the Jubilee government. President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto have nominated 6 women for Defense, Land, Housing and Urban Development, Foreign Affairs among others. Among those nominated are former Ambassador Raychelle Omamo and Kitui Central MP Charity Ngilu. FM
24-Apr-13 Kenyatta Announces Cabinet Members President Uhuru Kenyatta has unveiled four of his 18 Cabinet Secretary nominees. Kenyatta picked seasoned diplomat Amina Mohamed as the next Secretary for Foreign Affairs, pulling her out of the United Nations. President Kenyatta said the selection of the nominees was informed by the Constitutional requirements; the need to reflect the country's diversity and quest to have capable people who will take the country to the next level of development. Press
17-Apr-13 Kenya Supreme Court: Election was not Perfect Kenya's Supreme Court on Tuesday said the execution of the nation's March presidential election wasn't perfect but that petitions to overturn the result did not prove President Uhuru Kenyatta was illegally elected. The court had announced its unanimous ruling upholding Kenyatta's election in late March but on Tuesday released its 113-page written decision.
05-Apr-13 Kenya's New MPs Demand More Money Before Taking Office Kenya's new MPs want a pay rise before they have even taken office, protesting that their £51,000 salary is too low to live on in a country where the average income is less than £100 a month. Local politicians have also joined the call for more cash, despite Kenya's £3.5 billion public sector wage bill doubling in the last four years and now consuming half of domestic revenue. MPs have complained that their salary, much of it tax-free, would not be enough to repay mortgages on new homes or loans on new cars to which they were now entitled. Digital
05-Apr-13 Three More ICC Witnesses Refuse to Testify Against Uhuru The International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor Fatou Bensouda has suffered another setback in her case against President-elect Uhuru Kenyatta. Just three months to the start of Uhuru’s trial on July 11 at The Hague, it is emerging that three prosecution witnesses have refused to testify against him. The witness, Bensouda added, developed cold feet due to what she termed as “concerns about retaliation against his family from the accused persons”. Digital
05-Apr-13 Obama Sends Special Message to Uhuru President-elect Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto have received a congratulatory message from US President Barrack Obama on their election in last month's General Election. In the congratulatory message that was delivered to the president-elect at his KICC office by America's ambassador to Kenya Robert Godec, President Obama said the electoral process and the peaceful adjudication of disputes that ensued are testaments to the progress Kenya has made in strengthening its democratic institutions. Post
04-Apr-13 Carter Center Slates Kenya Vote on Technical Failures; US Ambassador to Attend Swearing-in An American election observer group led by former President Jimmy Carter said Thursday that Kenya’s March 4 presidential election suffered serious technological shortcomings and that election officials at times prevented observers from carrying out their mission, but it said the election’s paper trail preserved the will of Kenyan voters. The United States Embassy says its ambassador will attend Kenyatta’s swearing-in next week. Britain, Kenya’s other major Western partner, has not yet announced if its high commissioner will attend.
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  • Date: 04 March 2013
  • Event: Presidential Election (First Round) & Parliamentary Election
  • Country: Republic of Kenya

Overview of the Kenyan Political System:
In the presidential elections, the winning candidates must have won a nationwide plurality as well as 25 per cent of the votes in any five of the eight provinces. The candidate also needs to win the parliamentary election for their own constituency.

For the National Assembly, Bunge, 210 members elected by plurality vote in single-member constituencies, twelve members (nominated by the political parties) are selected by the president and two members are reserved ex offico.

Both the president and the National Assembly members serve five-year terms.

For further information: Consortium for Elections and Political Process Strengthening (CEPPS)


Candidate Profiles: 
Uhuru Kenyatta

Raila Odinga

Musalia Mudavadi 


The 2013 Kenya Elections
by Foard Copeland and Jennifer Gadarowski



  • Population: 43 million (July 2012 est.)
  • Life Expectancy at Birth: 63 years
  • Literacy (Age 15 or over who can read and write): 87.4%
  • GDP (Purchasing Power Parity): USD 71.21 billion (2011 est.)
  • Unemployment rate: 40% (2008 Est.)
  • Public Debt: 50.7% of GDP
  • Inflation Rate: 14% (2011 est.)

Source: CIA World Factbook

For more detailed information on Kenya please see the CFC PMESII Report on Kenya.
CFC In-Brief
23-Apr-13: Post-Election Kenya: Democracy and Devolution This Document provides brief overviews of significant events and developments in the CFC coverage areas.
CFC In Focus
19-Mar-13: 2013 Kenyan Election Results: Moving Forward This document provides the ‘In Focus’ excerpt from the MB Weekly 05 — 19 March 2013. The ‘In Focus’ section of the weekly gives our readership a more detailed reporting of an event or topic of particular relevance in the Mediterranean Basin and other regions of interest. ‘In Focus’ pieces provide hyperlinks to source material highlighted and underlined in the text.
CFC Thematic Report
FEB-13: The 2013 Kenya Elections This report examines preparations for the March 2013 national elections in Kenya. It summarises the instability that stemmed from election results in 2007, the ICC indictment of 2013 candidates for president and vice-president, and efforts that were introduced to mitigate civil strife and possible flashpoints where political tensions might give way to violence.
08-FEB-13: High Stakes -Kenya will hold general elections on March 4, the first elections since the serious violence that engulfed the country after the 2007 polls and the first under Kenya’s new constitution. Inter-ethnic clashes and police violence after the 2007 elections left up to 1,300 people dead and more than 650,000 displaced.As this report shows, the underlying causes of past election-related violence remain in place, and in some parts of the country the tensions have escalated.
JAN-13: Kenya's Election: Risk of Renewed Violence - The run-up to the 4 March Kenyan presidential election has been marked by more political drama than a Nigerian soap opera: secret agreements between candidates; new political parties created out of thin air; shifting alliances; lawsuits filed, dropped and re-filed; delays in voter registration; and questions about the competence and integrity of the leading candidates and the political system as a whole.
17-JAN-13: Kenya’s 2013 Elections - Kenya’s elections this year should turn the page on the bloodshed of five years ago, but the risk of political violence is still unacceptably high. A new constitution, fresh election commission and reformed judiciary should help. But the vote, now set for 4 March 2013, will still be a high-stakes competition for power, both nationally and in 47 new counties.
Council on Foreign Relations
JAN-13: Electoral Violence in Kenya: Contingency Planning Memorandum Kenya is at risk of repeating the violence that marred its 2007 presidential election, during which 1,133 died and nearly 600,000 were displaced from their homes. Political order in Kenya nearly collapsed. Ending the crisis required two months of negotiations mediated by former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan and supported by the United States and its partners.
OCT-12: Kenya's 2013 General Election: A Review of the Environment and Electoral Preparedness Over the past year, public attention shifted to political campaigns and preparedness for the next elections. Since the end of the post-election violence in 2008, the political context has evolved in response to developments arising from the implementation of the National Accord. Debate about impunity, the constitution implementation process, the performance of public institutions, violence, electoral reform, absence of cohesion, and the lingering question of internally displaced persons, are some of the key issues that remain salient and critical to policy and political discussions as the next General Election approaches. This review report assesses the broader context for electoral preparedness.
Africa Policy Institute
JUL-12: Assessing Risk to Stability in Pre-Election Kenya. Months before the March 2013 general elections, Kenya faces real risk to its stability. The trajectories of the on-going reform process, the imperative to redress past injustices particularly relating to the 2008 post-election violence, an entrenched culture of vigilantism relating to armed ‘ethnic militias’ and a war in Somalia against the terror Al-Shabaab terror organization allied to forces of international terrorism are poised on a collision course. Specifically, the challenges to a stable transition relates to constitution implementation particularly a contested devolution system; tensions and divisions spawned by the dynamics of tackling the entrenched culture of impunity relating to the cycles of post-election violence; the resurgence of militias such as the Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) and the potential threat they pose to the upcoming election; and the internal risk to stability posed by Kenya’s external war in Somalia. The intense ethnicization of politics on the road to the 2013 elections is particularly exacting its toll on pre-election stability environment.
MAR-2012: Early Warning and Conflict Prevention by the EU: Learning lessons from the 2008 post-election violence in Kenya. This report looks at the way conflict early warning, as well as other conflict-related information and analysis, was taken into account, processed and acted upon by EU actors in Kenya, before, during and after the violence which broke out after the December 2007 presidential elections. Drawing from this experience, the report proposes a number of recommendations to improve the EU early warning-early response system. It also focuses on the Kenyan early warning and peacebuilding architecture, the challenges faced and opportunities to overcome them. The report suggests the EU should consider empowering conflict-affected communities to identify their main security threats and to respond to them in a constructive and peaceful way to improve the link between early warning and early response.