Kibaki sends controversial list to Speaker

January 31, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya Jan 31 – The Speaker of the National Assembly Kenneth Marende said on Monday that he had already received the list of nominees for the post of CJ, Attorney General and DPP which will now be forwarded to the relevant House committee.

Speaking after meeting a delegation of Russian MPs, Mr Marende confirmed that he was in the possession of a letter from the secretary to the Cabinet Francis Muthaura, stating the preferred nominees.

"We have received a letter from the Head of the Civil Service advising us of the nominations that have been made.  What we intend to do is let this run through the parliamentary and constitutional process," he said.

He said he had not received any communication from Prime Minister Raila Odinga protesting the list of nominees.

Sources said the PM\’s side was planning to stall tabling of the names in Parliament by writing to the Speaker requesting him to make a ruling on whether the names should be accepted in the absence of consultations.

The Premier said he had not endorsed the list that contained the names of Justice Alnashir Visram as the Chief Justice, Professor Githu Muigai as Attorney General and Kioko Kilukumi as Director of Public Prosecutions.

Mr Marende at the same time said that he was prepared to give a ruling on the matter if it was raised on the floor of the House.

"I have my personal opinion which I would rather keep to myself for the moment but when the time comes and I have to give my decision, I have always risen to the challenge and I will not shy away from this one," he said.

This is not the first time that the Speaker finds himself in the middle of a battle between the Grand Coalition principals.  In 2009, he was forced to step in and take over the role of chairman of the House Business Committee after the principals differed over whom between the PM and VP Kalonzo Musyoka was the Leader of Government Business.

Meanwhile, the chief mediator to the Kenya peace process, Kofi Annan has said he is deeply concerned over the standoff on the nominees.

The former UN secretary general said that the two principals should work together through a transparent mechanism of consultations, as required by the Constitution. 

"I therefore urge the principals to make every effort to solve the current impasse, and give this important beginning of true judicial reform a solid foundation," he said

He urged the two principals to reaffirm their commitment to democratic principles, the rule of law, and the full and faithful implementation of the Constitution and the broader reform agenda.

"The Kenyan people have justifiably placed great hope in the Constitution and its promise for creating more transparent and accountable leadership throughout the government, especially as provided for in Chapter 6 of the Constitution."

"This would give confidence to the people of Kenya that the fight against impunity will continue unabated," he added.

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