NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 13 – As promised, the Judicial Service Commission on Wednesday made public the names of candidates shortlisted for the position of Deputy Chief Justice and earlier than expected, the names of the candidates shortlisted for the vacancy on the Supreme Court bench.
A total of 13 candidates, all female, out of 15 applicants have been shortlisted to contest for the post of Deputy Chief Justice with 10 of them being sitting judges.
From the Court of Appeal are judges Hannah Okwengu, Philomena Mwilu, Agnes Murgor, Fatuma Sichale, Martha Koome, Wanjiru Karanja and Roselyne Nambuye and Abida Ali-Aroni, Lydia Achode and Pauline Nyamweya of the High Court.
The three remaining candidates shortlisted for the job of DCJ are advocates Surinder Kapila, Pamela Tutui and Joyce Majiwa.
Nine of the above shortlisted candidates have also been shortlisted for the post of Supreme Court judge. They are Koome, Murgor, Karanja, Mwilu, Nambuye, Sichale, Nyamweya, Tutui and Majiwa.
Court of Appeal Judge Alnashir Visram and Judge Mbogholi Msagha of the High Court, like Nambuye, have also made the cut for the vacancy on the Supreme Court bench having also been shortlisted for the post of Chief Justice.
Court of Appeal Judge Erastus Githinji, High Court Judges Isaac Lenaola, Luka Kimaru and Kiplangat Sergon have also been shortlisted for the Supreme Court judge vacancy.
Others are advocates David Waihiga, John Kipkoech and Kibaya Laibuta.
Waihiga who was the only male to apply for the post of Deputy Chief Justice did not make the cut and neither did Judith Wanjala of the Magistrates’ Court.
The three who did not make the cut for the judge’s vacancy on the Supreme Court bench are Dr Isaac Rutenberg, Prof Kevin Faustine O. Mare and Wanjala.
It is not the first time Okwengu has made a bid for the DCJ job, having first done so in 2011 when she went up against Nancy Baraza.
Justice Ali-Aroni also comes back swinging after being re-instated in 2014 after she appealed an initial finding of unsuitability by the Judges and Magistrates Vetting Board.
When making public the names of those shortlisted for the job of DCJ and Supreme Court judge on Wednesday, the Acting Chair of the JSC Margaret Kobia defended the process after questions regarding its transparency were raised by among others, the Law Society of Kenya.
“The Commission remains committed to a transparent and accountable recruitment process,” her statement to the press read.