1 October 2011

Kenya: Team Work Among Staff Key to Dispense Justice

A High Court judge yesterday said justice can only be dispensed when judicial officials cooperate. Speaking at a farewell party of Justice Milton Asike Makhandia, Kisii High Court station head Justice Ruth Sitati said when there is cooperation among judicial officials and paralegals, backlog cases could quickly be dispensed with.

As a proof, Justice Sitati cited the achievements by the outgoing Judge Makhandia who is moving to Machakos from Kisii. She said the outgoing judge helped to reduce a backlog of cases at the High Court in Kisii in the last one and half years he was at the station. Over the last year, Justice Makhandia settled 1, 200 cases out of the 6, 000 that were pending in the court. "Six thousand cases were pending but I have since managed to settle 1, 200. I hope that the remaining will also be handled with the urgency they deserve," Justice Makhandia said.

He said he managed to have such a high number of cases settled because of the cooperation he got from the junior staff. "I know you will face certain challenges as a new judge but this should not scare you. I am certain that if you nurture good working conditions with the paralegals work will move smoothly," he said.Justice Sitati promised to try to have as much cases settled. "To reduce 6, 000 cases to 4, 800 needs serious commitment and this is what my brother Makhandia did," Justice Sitati said.

On her part, Justice Lagat praised Justice Makhandia for work well done. Justice Korir called for cooperation among the paralegals asked them to consult wherever there is a problems saying that without cooperation nothing good will be realized in the dispensation of justice. "This is my first I have been appointed to the bench because I initially used to work as a state counsel. I hope I will learn more from my senior sister Justice Sitati," Justice Korir said. She asked the paralegals to work hand in hand with new judge to make work easier.

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