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Seeking justice for ignored public participation: Lobby moves to court to stop CJ recruitment

Posted by African Press International on July 15, 2016

ERIC MATARA -1 | Ijumaa, Julai 15, 2016

Kenyans may have to wait a little bit longer than expected for a new Chief Justice (CJ), Deputy Chief Justice (DCJ) and a judge of the Supreme Court after a lobby group moved to court seeking to stop their recruitment.

On Friday, the Trusted Society for Human Rights Alliance filed a petition at the Nakuru High Court seeking to stop the ongoing recruitment claiming that the process is “opaque, clandestine and shrouded in secrecy against the Constitution and does not inspire public confidence.”

The lobby group through lawyers Benard Kipkoech Ng’etich and Lawrence Karanja has sued the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), accusing it of being resistant to public scrutiny and of “midwifing the CJ, DCJ and the Supreme Court judge posts based on an unknown criteria.”

The petitioner averred that the JSC shortlisted candidates for the position of CJ, DCJ and Supreme Court judge in secrecy against the Constitution.

According to the petitioner, apart from the advertisement asking qualified applicants to apply for the posts, the whole process has been shrouded in secrecy, nepotism, and horse-trading [hard and shrewd bargaining, especially in politics] at the expense of accountability and nationalism.

“The recruitment exercise is not constitutional as it has been turned into a theatre of absurdities. It is not open to public participation,” states part of the petition.

They stated that the process has denied participants an equal opportunity as required by the law, including Supreme Court judge Jackton Ojwang’, law professor Makau Mutua and former Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (now Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission) boss Aaron Ringera among others.

They are seeking conservatory orders barring the JSC from interviewing the shortlisted candidates or filling the positions until the matter is hear and determined.

Justice Janet Mulwa certified the matter urgent and scheduled inter-parties hearing for July 21.

The interviews for filling of the positions had been scheduled for July 29.

(Editing by Joel Muinde)

End. Nation news Kenya

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