In relation to the administration of justice and law, in Kenya or your country, explain the composition and jurisdiction of the Resident Magistrate‟s courts

The Resident magistrate court

·         Establishment

It is established by section 3 (I) of the Magistrates Court Act, Cap 10, Laws of Kenya, as a sub-ordinate court.

·         Composition

The court is duly constituted when held by; the chief magistrate, senior principal magistrate, principal magistrate. Senior resident magistrate or the resident magistrate duly appointed by the judicial service commission.

·         Jurisdiction

Under section 3(2) of the Magistrates Court Act, the court has jurisdiction throughout Kenya. It exercises both original and appellate jurisdiction. It exercises jurisdiction in both civil and criminal cases.

·         Criminal Jurisdiction

It exercises original and appellate jurisdiction in criminal cases. It has no appellate jurisdiction in civil cases.

When held by the Resident magistrate the maximum sentence it can impose is 24 strokes, 7 years imprisonment, or a fine not exceeding Kshs. 20,000. When held by the chief magistrate, senior principal magistrates, principal magistrate or senior resident magistrate, it has jurisdiction imposes any sentence as long as the court can try the offense.

·         Appellate Jurisdiction

The court entertains criminal appeals from the District Magistrates Court 3rd class.

·         Civil Jurisdiction

The courts civil jurisdiction is subject to pecuniary or monetary limitations.

Court Value of subject matter
Chief magistrate 3,000,000
Senior principal magistrate 2,000,000
Principal magistrate 1,000,000
Senior resident magistrate 800,000
Resident magistrate 500,000


The court has unlimited jurisdiction to entertain cases based on African customary law.

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