A religious advocacy group is calling for immediate replacement of six judges who were left out of recent appointments to various divisions of the Judiciary by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
According to the Kenya National Muslims Advisory Council (KENMAC), the judges failed a suitability test and the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) must henceforth move with speed and terminate their services at the corridors of justice.
“If the president failed to appoint them because they have integrity questions, then they should be sacked, removed from office and new judges appointed,” KENMAC Chairperson Sheikh Juma Ngao said at a press conference Tuesday.
During last week’s appointments, the President declined to approve the nomination of Aggrey Muchelule, George Odunga, Weldon Korir and Prof Joel Ngugi who were recommended for the Court of Appeal. Also in the list of those left out by the head of state are judges Evans Makori and Judith Omange Cheruiyot, who had been recommended for the Labor Court.
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According to KENMAC, some of the political leaders and lawyers who have been so critical of the President must stop castigating him over his decision on the matter given that the head of state was privy to information which they were not privileged to receive.
“The President failed to appoint them with reasons. Those who were not appointed have been said to have integrity questions, so the President has the right to follow legal and intelligence advice,” Ngao charged.
As a consequence, the council says JSC has no option but present fresh names to the President for appointment in order to fill the vacant positions in the Judiciary.
“We have our own respect reserved for the JSC, but in a situation where the integrity of the judiciary is at stake, then the President and Kenyans have a right to make demands,” Ngao added.
And that’s not all, the lobby wants the six judges investigated for misconduct. While reiterating that this is the only way to restore public confidence in the judiciary, the council, also challenged the newly appointed Chief Justice Martha Koome to streamlines operations in the government’s judicial arm.