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New constitution allows Kenyans to have dual citizenship

Kenya's new Constitution which was recently approved in a referendum, will for the first time allow its citizens to have dual citizenship.

According to the new Constitution, citizens cannot lose Kenyan citizenship if they acquire the citizenship of another country as is the case currently.


The new law will mean that Kenyans who, as a result of acquiring the citizenship of another country, ceased to be Kenyan citizens would gain an entitlement to regain it on application.


Dual citizenship is a status in which a person is concurrently regarded as a citizen under the laws of more than one state. The right to dual citizenship is contained in 3rd Chapter of the Constitution which was endorsed by Kenyans on 4th August.


It is, however, significant to note that dual citizenship in the country applies to persons who are its citizens by birth. If a person acquired Kenyan citizenship by registration, their status might be revoked if they did so fraudulently, or by false representation.


Several Kenyan athletes have in the past forfeited their citizenship and become citizens of European, American or Middle East countries.


They include Stephen Cherono now Qatar's Saif Saaeed Shaheen, who holds the world record in the 3,000 metres steeplechase, former Kenyan now American Bernard Lagat, Dane Wilson Kipketer, Albert Chepkurui now known as Abdullah Ahma Hassan of Qatar and Abel Cheruiyot of Bahrain.


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