NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 18 – The Supreme Court is on Wednesday expected to hear a petition by suspended High Court Judge Joseph Mutava challenging the recommendation by a tribunal formed to probe his conduct that he be fired.
Justice Mutava had filed an application challenging a proposal by the tribunal led by Chief Justice David Maraga that proposed that he should be removed from office for misconduct.
The tribunal ruled for the removal of Mutava over his handling of the case against businessman Kamlesh Pattni and the judge is seeking that the decision be quashed.
According to the tribunal, three complaints against the judge had been proven and hence their decision to recommend that he be removed.
The tribunal had found that the judge had, in collusion with others, allocated himself a file without the knowledge of the duty judge, proceeded to write a judgment in a case where he was being investigated, and sought to influence a ruling.
It was alleged that Justice Mutava caused a file to be retrieved from the safe custody of the High Court and taken to him at his new work station in Kericho and that he solicited a Sh2.5 million bribe on behalf of another judge.
The third claim was that he was seen in Karen, Nairobi, in the company of one of the parties in a case before him.
Three other allegations were, however, not proved and were dismissed.
Through his lawyer Philip Nyachoti, Mutava however stated that the tribunal acted outside its jurisdiction saying it was unconstitutionally constituted and recommendations arrived at were null and void.
He argued that the tribunal erred in law and facts by proceeding to hear and make recommendations adverse to the judge when complaints had been withdrawn.
He contended that the tribunal also relied on uncorroborated third party evidence to make adverse recommendations against the judge.
He pointed out that the allegations against Mutava were not proved in any way.
Other members of the tribunal were vice-chairman Jedidah Ntoyai, Justice Maureen Odero, Justice David Majanja, Omesh Kapila, Patricia Kameri-Mbote and Lawrence Mute. The joint secretaries were Mugure Gituro and Tom Nyamorata.