Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu is in hot soup after the Judicial Service Commission accused her of using shrewd tactics to save her job.
The Judicial Service Commission alleged that DCJ Mwilu and her team of lawyers manipulated the rules. Additionally, the commission claimed that they used delaying tactics to stop court proceedings that sought her removal.
The first petition to remove the Deputy Chief Justice from office was filed in 2018. Since then, the court has not pronounced any conclusive judgement on the issue of her removal. The lack of a conclusive judgement has frustrated the Judicial Service Commission.
The High Court suspended all the proceedings against DCJ Mwilu. Therefore, the Judicial Service Commission cannot proceed with any of the four petitions filed against her.
The Judicial Service Commission alleged that Mwilu and her lawyers concealed information that was material to her removal from office.
Nelson Havi, John Khaminwa, and Okong’o Omogeni are the lawyers on record for the Deputy Chief Justice. They argued that the Judicial Service Commission could not give Mwilu a fair hearing.
The lawyers filed a petition seeking the court to exclude Law Society of Kenya (LSK) representative to the JSC Macharia Njeru and Attorney General Paul Kariuki from the case.
They claimed that having been part of the team that approved criminal proceedings against the DCJ, the court should exclude Paul Kariuki. Additionally, they argued that Mr Njeru took sides when he backed the Attorney General’s decision yo institute a suit against Mwilu.
The JSC noted that Mwilu had attempted to make the court withdraw one of the petitions. The Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) and Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI ) are the ones who had filed it.
Mwilu argued that State agencies had no authority to participate in any proceedings regarding the removal of a judge. JSC took up Mwilu’s case early this year.