rigid constitution is one which can only be changed as the result of a long and

Rigid constitution is one which can only be changed

This preview shows page 47 - 49 out of 214 pages.

rigid constitution is one which can only be changed as the result of a long and cumbersome procedure. Such constitutions can only be by definition, written constitutions. For example, amendment to the American constitution can only be effected by the approval of the president , a two-thirds majority in the House of Representatives and the senate, and the approval of the three-quarters of the Legislature of the Federal States. It is possible to delay or blocksuch amendments in either the House of the Representatives or the senate. It does not follow though, that all written constitutions are rigid. It depends on the manner in which an amendment can be made. A flexible constitution is a constitution which can be amended with ease. All unwritten constitutions will generally be flexible.The Kenya constitution can be altered by a Bill supported on the second readings by votes of not less than sixty five percent of all the members of the Assembly. Such a Bill also requires the assent of the President. There is no question of any referendumand the ease with which the Kenya constitution has been amended since original independence constitution of 1963, suggests that although the constitution is written, itis nevertheless a flexible one.Another distinction can be drawn between Unitary and Federal constitutions where,under a unitary constitution, as is in Kenya, the Central Government retains the principalpowers of state; there is no delegation of powers to the provinces. Under a federal constitution,the power of state are divided between the Central Government and the Federal States, as is thecase in Nigeria.The importance of the constitution in Kenya is made by the section 3 of the Act of Parliament. In here, the constitution is supported by the force of law throughout Kenya. If an other law is inconsistent with this constitution, the constitution shall prevail and law shall be void. This gives the High Court of Kenya power to declare any parliament which is inconsistent with any part of the constitution to be unconstitutional and void. In addition, if the Executive (which includes both the administration and the of the local and central government) acts in an unconstitutional manner, an aggrieved person can apply to the High Court for declaratory order. This order can claim the action in question is ultra vires.In addition, he can apply for an order of injunction to restrain the Executive from acting in the manner it proposes.From what has been said above, it is clear that there is a division of powers between the three organs. The powers of government are traditionally divided into three main organs; the executive, the judiciary and the legislative. This division, in a way, is necessary. If the same person or body exercised all the three functions, then there could be tyranny and arbitrary government. It is, therefore desirable that the power of government should be vested an and third National the the other Act of members in
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