USIU-Africa's Division of Legal Services hosts webinar on Immigration Law as part of ongoing legal webinar series

By Anne Maina, Project Assistant – NIERA

In a bid to continuously appraise its larger community and partners on topical legal and governance issues United States International University – Africa’s (USIU-Africa) Division of Legal Services recently hosted a webinar on “Immigration Law” on August 26, 2021 as part of the ongoing legal webinar series.

Moderated by USIU-Africa’s Director of Legal Services Hellen Ombima, the webinar sort to shed light on immigration law, specifically the key concepts of immigration law, government agencies involved and immigration issues such as varying immigration status and voting rights of immigrants.

To kick off the session, Rose Muigai an Advocate and Solicitor of the High Court of Kenya and Supreme Court of England and Wales delved deep into the four statutes governing immigration in Kenya namely; the Constitution of Kenya, 2010, Kenya citizenship and Immigration Act 2011, Kenya Immigration Regulations Act, 2012 and Kenya Citizenship and Foreign Nationals Management Act, 2011. She further highlighted Immigration department, National Legislation and the High Court as the key government bodies involved in implementing the immigration law.

Highlighting the various work permits available for immigrants, Ms. Muigai further explained the various professions that demand approvals from respective regulator bodies in addition to obtaining work permits prior to commencing work in Kenya. Such professions include but are not limited to, education, pharmaceutical industry, hospitality industry and ICT industry. Below is the list of work permits immigrants can make an application for:
• CLASS A: Mining sector
• CLASS B-Agriculture and animal sector
• CLASS C: Prescribed professions
• CLASS D: Employment
• CLASS F: Specific manufacturing
• CLASS G: Investor Visa
• CLASS I: Approved religious and charitable organizations
• CLASS K: Ordinary residents
• CLASS M: Refugees

She further noted that permits could be validated and invalidated and consequently canceled in the event of change of circumstances or failure to disclose material facts. Besides the work permits, immigrants have the option of applying for different passes depending on the nature of the circumstance at hand. These passes include; dependant pass, special pass and student pass, all of which have stipulated timelines within which they are valid.

With respect to citizenship, Ms. Muigai emphasized that immigrants with valid work permits and passes have the privilege of applying for citizenship having proved that they have continuously lived in Kenya for seven (7) years. More so, immigrants could apply for permanent residence depending on the different fronts stipulated under the Immigration Law. Notably, one can lose permanent residence and citizenship on the grounds of specified circumstances in both the Immigration Law and the Constitution of Kenya, 2010.

For more information on immigration issues, please refer to:
Immigration Law
The Constitution of Kenya, 2010

USIU-Africa continues to organize insightful webinars on topical issues, for more information please visit the USIU-Africa events page.

Watch the recorded webinar via YouTube here:

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