On Tuesday 13 September 2022, President-elect William Ruto will take the oath of office to become the fifth President of the Republic of Kenya. It is a high-stakes event that sees at least 20 Heads of State, 2,500 VIPs, and over 60,000 Kenyans grace the occasion at the Moi International Sports Center-Kasarani. Additionally, 10,000 police officers will be deployed to man the venue and the city.
The event will cost the Treasury KSh. 200 million and is handled by the Assumption of the Office of the President Committee which is created under Article 141 of the Constitution. The Constitution further stipulates that this day shall be a public holiday.
But what is the order of events that will be followed at Ruto’s inauguration ceremony?
- 4.00 a.m. – The gates of Moi International Sports Centre-Kasarani are officially opened to the public.
- 7.00 a.m. – Members of the public are to be seated.
- 10.30 a.m. – The Service Commanders including heads of the Kenya Army, Kenya Navy, and Kenya Airforce arrive at the venue.
- 10.45 a.m. – Invited Heads of State and governments arrive.
- 11.00 a.m. – Chief of Defence Forces, General Robert Kariuki Kibochi, arrives.
- 11.05 a.m. – Chief Justice Martha Koome, the six Supreme Court judges, and Chief Registrar of the Judiciary Anne Amadi arrive.
- 11.30 a.m. – The Guard of Honour marches to position.
- 11.35 a.m. – Deputy President-elect Rigathi Gachagua arrives.
- 11.40 a.m. – President-elect William Ruto arrives.
- 11.45 a.m. – Outgoing President Uhuru Kenyatta arrives. He is received by General Kibochi and escorted to the ceremonial Land-Rover to enter the stadium. After the National Anthem, Uhuru will inspect the Guard of Honour for the final time as President.
- 12.10 p.m. – Chief Registrar Anne Amadi administers the oaths of office to Ruto and Gachagua in the presence of Chief Justice Martha Koome. It is however the Chief Justice who will introduce Ruto and Gachagua to the public and ask Ruto to take his position for the oath. Two oaths will be administered—Oath of Allegiance and Oath of Affirmation.
- President Uhuru will then hand over the instruments of power and authority to Ruto. This includes the ceremonial sword of power which signifies that the president is the Commander-in-Chief and the Constitution which is handed over as a symbol that the nation is governed by the rule of law. This will be crowned by the National Anthem.
- Uhuru’s Presidential Standard will be lowered as Ruto’s is hoisted simultaneously. A presidential standard is an official flag of the President, displayed alongside the national flag where the President is and pulled down as soon as he leaves. It is designed and made to the President-elect’s liking by the Kenya Defense Forces (KDF). A 21-gun salute will follow, and Uhuru will be given his Standard by the Chief of Defense Forces.
- Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua will invite one of the guests to make a speech on behalf of the invited dignitaries and then invite outgoing President Uhuru to make his valedictory speech.
- Gachagua will then deliver his speech as Deputy President. He will subsequently invite Ruto to make his inaugural address to the nation.
- Uhuru will lead the way out and receive Ruto at State House where a luncheon with invited Heads of State will take place before leaving the house on the hill. This will be the final act where Ruto finally ascends to the Presidency.