A new dawn at the Judiciary as President Kenyatta appoints 34 judges

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President Uhuru Kenyatta in a previous function
President Uhuru Kenyatta in a previous function

President Uhuru Kenyatta has appointed 34 judges.

This comes as the Court of Appeal is stretched with the appointment of Martha Koome as Chief Justice and William Ouko’s appointment as a Supreme Court judge.

The initial number of judges sent for his approval was 41, but one person died.

Judges approved for the Court of Appeal are Msagha Mbogholi, Hellen Omondi, Mumbi Ngugi, Francis Tuiyott, Pauline Nyamweya, Jessie Lesiit, and Imaana Laibuta.

The nine judges appointed by the president to be Judges of the Employment and Labour Relations Court are Baari Christine Noontatua, Gakeri Jacob Kariuki, Keli Jemima Wanza, Mwaure Ann Ngibuini, Matanga Bernard Odongo Manani, Rutto Stella Chemtai, Kebira Ocharo, Kitiku Agnes Mueni-Nzei, and Nderitu David Njagi,

The president has also appointed 18 judges to serve as Judges of the Environment and Land Court which includes Mboya Oguttu Joseph, Naikuni Lucas Leperes, Mwanyale Michael Ngolo, Addraya Edda Dena, Kimani Lilian Gathoni, Kamau Joseph Mugo, Wabwoto Karoph Edward, and Koross Anne Yatich Kipingor.

Others are Gicheru Maxwell Nduiga, Mogeni Ann Jacqueline Akhalemesi, Ongarora Fred Nyagaka, Christopher Kyania Nzili, Mugo David Mwangi, Omollo Lynette Achieng’, Washe Emmanuel Mutwana, Nyukuri Annet, Murigi Theresa Wairimu, and Asati Esther.

This also comes as a seven-judge bench is set to hear an appeal by the President, ODM leader Raila Odinga and the BBI secretariat following the nullification of the BBI process.

However, the Head of State declined to appoint six judges out of these proposed by JSC

They include Aggrey Muchelule, George Odunga, Weldon Korir and Prof Joel Ngugi who were recommended for the Court of Appeal.

Ngugi and Odunga were part of the judge bench that led the team which cut short the BBI train.

The list of the 41 judges was forwarded to the president for appointment in 2019 during the tenure of former CJ David Maraga.

In mid-2020, Maraga tried to push the president to appoint the names forwarded to him but he did not receive any response from Uhuru.

Maraga had said in a presser, which he opted after saying that the office of the President ignored his calls, that the constitution does not donate any mandate to the President to perform any other activities but to appoint the names received from JSC.