High court judge Said Chitembwe, one of the seven shortlisted candidates for the position of Supreme Court judge, has criticized the supreme court for nullifying the 2017 elections. The judge said he did not understand the majority’s reasoning.
In 2017, the majority nullified President Uhuru Kenyatta’s election. According to them, there was no proper transmission of the election results.
Chitembwe was the first candidate to appear before the Judicial Service Commission panel for the interview. He noted that he agreed with Judge Njoki Ndungu’s dissenting opinion.
According to Chitembwe, Njoki Ndung’u cross-checked all physical forms with complaints that the petitioners had made. Consequently, she held that the election should not be nullified since it was conducted per the law.
During the same interview, the judge questioned why the Supreme Court did not handle the issue of the Wajir Governor’s academic qualifications. Instead, the court directed that it was an issue that the IEBC should deal with.
Chitembwe also questioned why courts do not use the law when dealing with Governors’ cases.
“If a Form Four drop out is cleared and vies for Governor, I don’t think my hands will be tied to ask him if he has a degree certificate and how he got it,” he said.
Chitembwe said that if they nominate him, he will work towards eliminating corruption. However, he acknowledged that it would not be easy to eliminate the public perception of corruption.
The judge also promised to ensure that courts hear and determine cases within their time frame to avoid unnecessary delays.
Chitembwe had applied for both the position of Chief Justice and Supreme Court judge. Asked why he did so, he said that his only desire is to serve Kenyans.
“I want to serve Kenyans. This opportunity arose, and I think I am qualified to work in that court. I want to be part of the team,” he said.