Sources of Law

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Submitted By NickKibet
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To provide the candidate with a broad understanding of the Sources of Laws of Kenya:

• The Constitution

• Legislation

• Delegated Legislation.

• Statutes of General Application in force in England on 12th August 1897.

• Substance of Common Law and doctrines of equity.

• African Customary Law.

• Islamic Law.

• Hindu Law.

• Judicial Precedent (Case Law).


The term sources of law literally means where rues of law are found. This chapter describes the origins of the rules and principles which constitute the law applicable in a country at a given time. In other words the materials from which rules of law are developed.


Bill: - a draft law or legislation

Delegated legislation: - law made by parliament indirectly

Ultra vires: - Latin term which means “beyond the powers”

Common law: - a branch of the law of England which was developed from customs, usages and practices of the English people

Stare decisis; - Latin term which means “the decision stands”

Precedent: - An earlier decision of a court

This chapter has shown its importance in the industry first by way of hierarchy of laws. It is this particular hierarchy that is used when there is a conflict of laws in courts. Cases like the S.M Otieno case can hold proof to this. The law making process described is also the same procedure used in parliament when making laws.


The phrase source of law literally means where rules of law are found. However, the phrase has been used in a variety of senses. It has been used to describe;

i. The origins of the rules and principles which constitute the law applicable in a country at a given time.

ii. The source of force or validity of the various rules…...

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