The Kenya Magistrates and Judges Association and the Law Society of Kenya have come together to condemn President Uhuru Kenyatta for failure to gazette some judges who had been nominated.
KMJA Secretary General Derrick Kuto said once the Judicial Service Commission has recommended names for appointment, the President has no power to tinker with them.
“The decision by the President to leave out the six is therefore baffling, unfounded and patently unconstitutional,” said the SG.
According to the association, the President is setting a very bad precedent for this country, one of not following the rule of law and disobedience of court orders and it is against this background that they call upon the President to immediately gazette the six that were left out.
Kuto added that any such attempt amounts to interference with the institutional independence of the JSC, violation of the Constitution and in particular, the rule of law which the President swore to uphold.
On the other hand, LSK through Chief Executive Officer Mercy Wambua said the President cannot change the list, review it or reject some of the names. “He must appoint the persons as recommended and forwarded to him by the Judicial Service Commission.”
“This is an outright contravention of the Constitution of Kenya, a blatant disregard of the Rule of Law and undermines the independence of the Judiciary. We wish to remind the President that the Constitution is the supreme law of the Republic and binds all persons and all State organs at both levels of government She added.
The council called upon President Uhuru Kenyatta to comply with and uphold the Constitution by appointing the remaining 6 Judges without any further delay failure to which we shall move to Court for appropriate orders.
The Council further notes with great concern the continued attacks on the Judiciary by the President of the Republic of Kenya as well as by the members of the Executive. “In particular, the Council takes great exception to the remarks made in the President’s address to the Nation on the occasion of the 58th Madaraka Day, held at the Jomo Kenyatta International Stadium, Kisumu on 1st June 2021.”
The president recently appointed 34 judges out of the 41 that had been nominated after one of them passed away.