Former Chief Justice David Maraga has hit out at President Uhuru Kenyatta after he appointed 34 judges while rejecting six out of the 41 that had been nominated by the Judicial Service Commission during his tenure.
The six judges were; Joel Ngugi and George Odunga who had been part of a bench that declared the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) null and void. The other four were Weldon Korir, Aggrey Muchelule, Makori Evans Kiago, and Judith Omange Cheruiyot.
The retired Chief Justice while speaking in an interview with KTN News on Wednesday 9 June 2021 claimed that the initial list presented to the President by JSC was amended.
He explained that some names were removed while others were added adding that he did not want to mention the names but he was worried about the turn of events.
Maraga who retired in January this year said President Kenyatta was setting a bad precedent by changing the original list and adding other names in complete subversion of the constitution.
Maraga went on to urge President Uhuru Kenyatta to follow the Constitution and appoint the remaining judges.
“There is a procedure. Swear these judges in, lodge a complaint before JSC and whoever has been appointed will be removed. What has happened is that these judges have been condemned unheard, in the eyes of the public, these are the corrupt judges the President was talking about,” he said.
He argued that in regards to the appointment of the judges, the President’s role is ceremonial.
He maintained the first in command has to follow the constitution, not his way as he said as the Constitution says the President shall appoint the judges as recommended by JSC.
Maraga pointed out that the President has no powers to reject any names forwarded to him.
He stated that if the country continues this way, it will turn into a banana republic.
He noted that in a democratic country, no one is allowed to do as they wish and the law must be followed.
The 14th Kenyan CJ told Uhuru that he was literally ruining the careers of the six judges and totally ruining their lives and that of their families.
He added that it is so serious that it cannot be done as casually as it has been done and that makes it extremely bad.