6 March 2018

Kenya to Assist Somalia Develop Legal and Justice Systems

Nairobi — The Government of Kenya has reaffirmed its commitment in assisting the Federal Government of Somalia re-establish its governance systems by redeveloping the country's legal and justice systems.

The two governments that have had a longstanding cordial relationship based on the principles of Pan Africanism observe the need to continually cultivate peaceful diplomatic relations aimed at strengthening their ties.

Somali's Minister for Justice, Hassan Hussein Haji reiterated Somalia's reliance on Kenya to rebuild its systems when he paid a courtesy call on outgoing Attorney General Githu Muigai Tuesday morning.

"As we rebuild our systems, we remain indebted to the Kenyan Government for the role it has played in the past and continues to play today as we rebuild our country. As a government, we have so far been able to achieve a significant sense of security, political and economic stability in our country. We are now focusing on developing our judicial systems and look to learn from Kenya which has a strong system built over the years," Haji stated.

Professor Muigai on his part reiterated Kenya's belief in Pan Africanism as developed by the founding fathers of African countries at independence.

The Attorney General in particular observed that the Kadhis Courts remained an envied embodiment of Islamic law with many African countries learning from its implementation within the confines of a secular state as Kenya.

The Chief Legal Advisor further confirmed Kenya was prepared to develop a Memorandum of Understanding with the Somalia Government to strengthen the capacity of judicial officers at both the Judiciary Training Institute and the Kenya School of Law. Somalia seeks Kenya's assistance to train its judicial officers as well as in drafting its legislations.

On the maritime boundary dispute that lodged at the International Court of Justice at The Hague in the Netherlands, AG Muigai stressed the need for both countries to explore all discussion options on the matter.

"It remains my belief that both states must exhaust discussions directly or engage a third-party mediator who is respected by both parties. Kenya is ready, able and willing to sit down and discuss the issue amicably. We need to decelerate the case and accelerate diplomatic relations," Muigai emphasised.

Cognizant of the fact that both states do not have the technical capacity or expertise to explore, develop and exploit the disputed water resources, the Attorney General observed the urgent need for both countries to create a joint development authority to jointly benefit from the resources.

"Our two countries cannot individually utilize the resources available in the disputed area; however, a joint development authority will be more beneficial in the current situation. It is the operations of this joint development authority that will in future guide generations in determining the issues of the boundaries.


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