As published in Laws of Kenya, Revised 2012
The Refugees Act, 2006 makes ‘provisions for the recognition, protection and management of refugees and for connected purposes’ in Kenya. It makes no specific provision for acquisition of citizenship or permanent residence by refugees, but nor does it exclude them from the usual processes.
The meaning of a ‘refugee’ is defined in s.3 of the Act. S.4 establishes under what conditions a person will be disqualified from obtaining refugee status and s.5 governs when a person shall cease to be a refugee for the purposes of the Act. Pursuant to s.6 the Department of Refugee Affairs is responsible for all administrative matters concerning refugees in Kenya. A person entering Kenya who wishes to be recognised as a refugee must appear in person before the Commissioner within thirty days after his or her entry into Kenya as per s.11. A person who has applied for status may remain in Kenya under circumstances established by s.12 of the Act.
Once recognised as a refugee in Kenya, a refugee will be issued with an identity card and be permitted to remain in Kenya in accordance with the provisions of the Act. S.16 establishes the rights and duties of refugees in Kenya and pursuant to s.16(2), the Minister may designate places and areas in Kenya to be transit centres or refugee camps. S.18 explains situations where no person shall be refused entry into Kenya, expelled, extradited or returned to any other country. S.19 governs when the Commissioner may withdraw the refugee status of any person in Kenya.
The expulsion of refugees and members of their families is governed by s.21. Pursuant to s.23, the Commissioner shall take specific measures to ensure the safety of refugee women and children in designated areas. Offences under the Act are explained in s.25. Pursuant to s.26, the Minister may make Regulations for carrying out the provisions of the Act.
The Refugees (Reception, Registration and Adjudication) Regulations, 2009 appear on page 21 as Subsidiary Legislation to the Act. Various copies of forms for registration and other purposes are provided beginning on page 37.
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