Kenya: State Loses Bid to Lock Out Justice Mwita From Case Challenging Kenyatta's Veto on Listing of Judges

5 December 2019

Nairobi — Attorney General Kihara Kariuki Wednesday lost a bid to bar Justice Chaha Mwita from hearing a petition challenging President Uhuru Kenyatta's refusal to appoint 41 judges shortlisted by the Judicial Service Commission (JSC).

Justices Lydia Achode and James Makau who are part of the three-judge bench Mwita is part of declined Kariuki's request despite the State Law Office through Peter Bita saying "Justice Mwita's participation would not appear to be impartial having fashioned the remedies being sought in this petition."

Bita expressed reservations about Justice Mwita's participation in the proceedings having determined a case in which he allowed the automatic appointment of Justice Mohammed Warsame to the JSC.

In the case, the Law Society of Kenya had similarly faulted President Kenyatta's refusal to appoint Justice Warsame.

The AG has since defended the Head of State's refusal to swear in the judicial officers over alleged "corruption".

The JSC had recommended of 3o judges to the Environment and Land Court (ELC) and the Employment and Labour Relations Court (ELRC) in August.

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