17 November 2012

Kenya: Four New Judges Head for Eldoret

The government will expand the High Court in Eldoret to handle land and environment matters.

Chief Justice Willy Mutunga has approved the establishment of the new courts which will also see four judges posted to the area.

It has been proposed that the courts will be based at the Eldoret Central Bank building as the government constructs additional courts in the town.

The four judges will handle the more than 9,000 pending cases.

"We will have more staff to help us reduce the cases and speed up dispensation of justice to the public in this area," said Eldoret High Court Judge Festus Azangalala on Thursday.

Azangala was appointed to the Appeal Court two weeks ago.

The posting of the four judges follows complaints by Law Society of Kenya chairman Erick Mutua three months ago over delayed judgments and pending cases at the courts.

Mutua had appealed to the CJ to post more judges to address the situation in areas affected by heavy backlogs of cases.

North Rift LSK chairman James Njuguna had said the region requires four more judges and five magistrates to clear the pending cases.

Eldoret chief magistrate Charles Mbogo a plan for the new court building has been sent to Mutunga for approval.

Mbogo said some of the magistrates are forced to work in their chambers because of shortage of court rooms.

The Eldoret Law Courts have 4 court rooms against the 10 magistrates.

Eldoret has a high number of land related cases and two of the judges to be posted the area will specifically handle land and environment matters in the region.

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