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Judiciary ready to handle 2017 elections disputes – CJ Maraga

Speaking after chairing his first full sitting of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) this year, the CJ advised any party dissatisfied with a court decision to exercise their right of appeal/FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya Jan 13 – Chief Justice David Maraga on Friday reiterated the Judiciary’s commitment to diligently and expeditiously deal with electoral disputes that may arise in the run-up and after the August General Election to safeguard the country’s democratic gains.

Speaking after chairing his first full sitting of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) this year, the CJ advised any party dissatisfied with a court decision to exercise their right of appeal.

“The Commission further assured Kenyans that the Judiciary is fully prepared to play its part in the resolution of any disputes and petitions that may arise from this year’s General Election,” he assured.

The CJ asked “Kenyans to respect and promote the independence of the Judiciary in dispute resolution” adding that as the true custodian of the rule of law, the Judiciary is duty bound to guide the country towards a peaceful, orderly and credible elections.

In a statement signed by the JSC Secretary and Chief Registrar of the Judiciary, Anne Amadi, the Commission expressed outrage over the public ‘lynching’ of judges or magistrates for their decisions.

The JSC cited on the recent verbal attacks by the National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale on a High Court Judge George Odunga over a court matter the latter was handling last month.

JSC supported the statement by the Chief Justice in which he defended the judge and the Judiciary against such attacks.

“The Commission was emphatic that the rule of law is the basis of any civilised and democratic society and that any action or conduct that undermines the administration of justice by the courts must be condemned if not punished, otherwise the country would slide to anarchy,” Amadi stated in the statement.

The JSC also discussed other cases of disobedience to courts and cautioned against raw and irresponsible exercise of power which could undermine public confidence in the Judiciary.

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