, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 5 – Lady Justice Njoki Ndung’u has denied being one of “two women” referred to in an affidavit by one Geoffrey Kiplagat alleging corruption in the Supreme Court.
In a demand letter from lawyer Andrew Musangi, Justice Ndung’u says her decision in a petition filed by Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero and determined on August 29, 2014 was based purely on the merits of the case and not on a Sh51 million bribe as also alleged by businessman Jacob Juma in his tweets.
“For the avoidance of any doubt our client wishes to emphatically state that she has never subscribed to corrupt practices of any kind,” Musangi states in the demand letter to Juma.
Justice Ndung’u has therefore demanded that Juma take down the tweets linking her to the bribery allegations which the Judicial Service Commission has been investigating for the last week.
The JSC was on Friday afternoon expected to give its verdict on the affidavit sworn by Kiplagat which accuses Supreme Court Justice Philip Tunoi of receiving a Sh200 million bribe from Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero to ensure he emerged victorious over his challenger Ferdinand Waititu.
The said affidavit also refers to two women who were allegedly also “taken care of” and which has led some to speculate that it could be in reference to Justice Ndung’u and Deputy Chief Justice Kalpana Rawal, the only two women who serve in the Supreme Court.
“The two lady justices of the Supreme Court were paid without Justice Tunoi’s involvement. The ladies dealt directly with the bribe giver,” Juma tweeted on January 31.
Justice Ndung’u has demanded that Juma not only take down the offensive tweets and apologise on Twitter, but place adverts in the Nation, Standard and The Star newspapers to retracting the allegations.
Doing so would not however, the letter makes clear, exempt him from paying damages.
“You are on public record as having more than 18,200 Twitter followers… Your offending publications were re-tweeted numerous times,” the demand letter reads.
But while Justice Ndung’u denies being one of the, “two women,” referred to in Kiplagat’s affidavit, her name does come up. “I had made over 10 visits to the Judge’s chamber where he (Tunoi) shares an office with Justice Njoki Ndung’u as he had told me to avoid phone calls as much as I could.”
When the Supreme Court delivered its judgement on the Kidero petition in August of 2014, Justice Ndung’u gave a concurring opinion. She agreed with the conclusion reached by the majority but differed with how they arrived at it.
The majority found that the Court of Appeal which nullified Kidero’s election on the grounds that Waititu was not given a fair hearing by the High Court, should not have even heard Waititu’s appeal as it was time barred.
Ndung’u disagreed with this finding and as the Court of Appeal had, found that the delay was explainable on account of the length of time the High Court took to furnish Waititu with copies of its proceedings for him to craft his appeal around.
She found that the delay wasn’t a good enough reason to deny Waititu his right to appeal.
She did however find that the Court of Appeal erred when it put Waititu’s right to be heard above the will of the electorate.