Chief Justice Martha Koome has reiterated her call for the six judges omitted from the list of those gazetted to be appointed.
Speaking during the swearing-in of Daniel Musinga as the president of the Court of Appeal, she said the moment was bitter-sweet, because four judges – who were to be appointed to the Appellate court – were not present for reasons not known to her.
“I’m a judge and I do not want to enter into any controversy but I’m duty bound to reiterate this position and call on (President) Uhuru to appoint the remaining six judges,” she said.
Koome said the Judiciary is in danger of capture from agencies as well as “people I shall not name”.
The CJ also raised concerns about limited funding of the Judiciary and addressed National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi directly, saying that the Sh17 billion allocation was too little out of the Sh3.6 trillion Budget read on Thursday.
“We have 26 other courts that are almost complete but can’t be occupied because there’s no money to complete them.”
“If we have to tackle backlog of cases and adopt technology to enhance efficiency and improve infrastructure and taking Justice closer to the people, we require funds allocated to the Judiciary.”
Koome said the Judiciary was operating in a ‘museum’ which was in a poor state and wondered why the Health ministry had not flagged it as a health hazard unfit for habitation.
The CJ congratulated Musinga and said she looked forward to working with him.
Meanwhile, Supreme Court judge William Ouko urged Koome to use diplomatic skills to bring to an end the stalemate on appointment of six judges.
President Uhuru Kenyatta declined to gazette the names of six judges citing integrity issues.
Aggrey Muchelule, George Odunga, Weldon Korir and Joel Ngugi were to serve in the Appellate court but their names were not gazetted.
Uhuru gazetted the names of 34 judges.