Kenya’s Supreme Court gets down to work

NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 13 – The Registrar of the Supreme Court Martin Muya has invited parties that have filed the first two cases to appear before him on Friday for purposes of taking dates for the hearing of the cases.

Muya who addressed a press conference together with the Chief Registrar of the Judiciary Gladys Shollei and the Chief Justice’s Chief of Staff Duncan Okello said the Court has invited the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) and the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) to agree on suitable dates for two suits relating to the date of the next general election.

The two cases were filed in March and May this year seeking the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Constitution on the date of elections.

“One of the cases specifically prays the Supreme Court to give its advisory opinion on the date of the General Election. This case contends that there is ambiguity in the present Constitution as to the date of the next general election,” Shollei said.

Both cases are to be mentioned before two judges of the Supreme Court for directions on the hearing dates.

She said that two other cases have been filed in the High Court also seeking a declaration on the election date. One of the cases was filed by Kilome MP John Harun Mwau and the other by Nairobi lawyer Mugambi Imanyara. The two High Court cases were due for mention on Thursday for purposes of taking a hearing date.

Last week Chief Justice Willy Mutunga issued a statement announcing that the Supreme Court Rules have been gazetted and that the Registry of the Court was open to the public from last Monday. In the statement the CJ also announced that the court wouldl expedite the hearing of the cases. He assured Kenyans that the court would give its verdict before the end of the year.

“My office is keenly aware that the issue of the date of the next general election is critical to Kenya’s peace and stability. All Kenyans yearn for a free, fair and peaceful general election. I will make sure the cases in the High Court are fast-tracked, heard and concluded as soon as possible, “Justice Mutunga said in the statement.

The Supreme Court comprises seven judges in which the Chief Justice is the President. Deputy CJ Nancy Baraza is the Deputy President. Other judges of the Court are Justices Philip Tunoi, Jackton Ojwang, Mohammed Ibrahim, Smokin Wanjala and Njoki Ndungu.

Rob Jillo

Rob is the Special Projects Editor. He has special liking for digital media being the first Online Editor for Capital Group. He likes blogging on day-to-day issues, views and news making headlines locally and on the global front. He is a student of Journalism and Related studies at the University of Nairobi and holds a diploma in Mass Communication.