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Why CJ Martha Koome Scored “Below Average” in First 60 Days in Office

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Chief Justice and President of Supreme Court of Kenya Martha Koome. Photo: Courtesy

The belated passive statement of Chief Justice Martha Koome to the first search and arrest of sitting High Court Judges while in the precincts of Court has disappointed many and left her legacy in jeopardy. It is exactly two months since CJ Koome assumed office as the First Female Chief Justice on 24th May 2021. In that short time, CJ Martha Koome has given many observers cause to wonder if she will attain the high bar set by her predecessors since promulgation of Constitution of Kenya 2010.

We adjudge CJ Martha Koome to have performed below average and let the Judiciary down in the following instances which occurred in her first 60 days in office: –

1. On 1st June 2021, when President Uhuru Kenyatta attacked the Judiciary in his Madaraka Day speech saying it “has tested our constitutional limits” and cited the Presidential Election Petition and BBI Case, both cases having been a litigant, CJ Martha Koome did not even pretend to defend the Judiciary or remind the President that Judiciary does not answer to the Executive.

2. On 3rd June 2021, when President Uhuru Kenyatta gazetted 34 Judges leaving out 6 JSC nominees who are all current Senior Judicial Officers and Judges, CJ Martha Koome departed from the position taken by the CJ Office (under CJ David Maraga) and attended the rushed swearing in of the select Judges where she led the Members of the Judiciary in bowing to the President.

3. On 4th June 2021, when CJ Martha Koome spoke on the matter of the omission of the 6 Judges, the matter had been overtaken by events and she neither made any demands or gave a deadline to the President or warn him against blatant disregard of court orders already issued on the matter. As a result, the appointment of the six (6) judges now remain in limbo.

4. On 18th June 2021, Martha Koome met Nairobi Metropolitan Authority (NMS) Director General Maj. Gen. Badi in the company of Former Nairobi County Secretary Peter Kariuki as evidenced by official photographs together. Mr. Kariuki is an accused person in a graft case pending before magistrates court and is out on bail. In addition, cases are pending in courts challenging the legality of NMS and a Military Officer sitting in the Cabinet.

5. On 9th July 2021, barely a month after meeting Mr. Peter Kariui who is an accused person in a pending corruption case before Chief Magistrate Hon Douglas Ogoti  in Nairobi Anti-Corruption Court, CJ Koome transferred the Chief Magistrate from the Anti-Corruption Court to head a Station in Embu disrupting the prosecution of Mr. Kariuki and his co-accused. This will likely delay conclusion of the case against Mr. Peter Kariuki.

Chief Justice Martha Koome with NMS Director Maj. Gen. Badi and Former Nairobi County Secretary Peter Kariuki.

6. On Friday 16th July 2021, CJ Martha Koome chaired her first National Council on the Administration of Justice (NCAJ). In blatant disregard of provisions of S. 34 of the Judicial Services Act, she “invited” CS of Interior and National Security and NMS Director and “excluded” Chairperson of LSK Nelson Havi who is a statutory member of the Council per s.34(2) of the Act. Chairman of LSK has since been removed from the list of NCAJ Members in the Judiciary Website, leaving many wondering whether she let her personal issues with the LSK Chair Nelson Havi who questioned her suitability for CJ impair her judgement. Further, at the NCAJ press briefing, CJ Koome likened Judiciary to “Son” and the Executive to the “Father” bringing to question the depth of her appreciation of the independence of Judiciary.

7. On 23rd July 2021, more than 24 hours after the search of the chambers and the person of the two High Court Judges, their arrest, questioning and recording of statements at DCI, CJ Martha Koome retrieved her voice only to issue a statement that did not as much as condemn the castigation and vilification of the Judges or demand that the members of NCAJ involved, DPP and IG, commit to respect and uphold the Independence of Judiciary or resign or be removed.

Thus, as we await the end of her First 100 Days in Office on Friday 3rd September 2021, for the above reasons, we score the performance of CJ Martha Koome, the First Female Chief Kenya, in her first 2 months in office below average. We also express the muted concerns of many in the legal fraternity that unless her camaraderie with the executive and its agents is checked, CJ Martha Koome risks reversing most of the gains made by her predecessors in securing the independence of the Judiciary from the executive.

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Why Mbaluka is Next Machakos Senator: Kavindu Yet to Make Maiden Speech

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Today is 1st April, 2022, a total of 373 days since Agnes Kavindu Muthama was sworn as in as 3rd Machakos Senator on 23rd March 2021. But Senator Kavindu is yet to make her maiden speech in the Senate. Indeed, as of today, the last words that came from the mouth of Senator Kavindu from the floor of the Senate is “Help me God.”

This should serve as a lesson to Machakos residents who voted her thinking they are punishing Hon Johnstone Muthama. The count went from having a robust and firebrand Senator in the person of Late Dr. Boniface Kabaka to having a person who cannot speak English to save herself from thirst in the person of Kavindu (whose name aptly means impeding darkness).

In 131 Days, People of Machakos shall have an opportunity to vote for another Senator. They must not make the same mistake they did last time. Thankfully, Wakili Joel Kyatha Mbaluka has graciously agreed to suspend his gubernatorial ambitions to vie for Senator to offer his people the oversight and representation they urgently need.

Machakos County have no choice but to elect Hon Wakili Joel Kyatha Mbaluka to the last man come Tuesday 9th August 2022. Wakili Mbaluka has what it takes to square out with fellow counsel at the Senate. He has the academic papers, he is articulate, he has the integrity and he has the knowledge to deliver as Machakos Senator.

Wakili Mbaluka holds Masters in Public Finance Management, which is what Machakos County residents need to stop the kleptocracy that Machakos has come to be known for. People of Machakos, please don’t elect another illiterate or someone who has been part of what is wrong at Machakos County. Give Wakili Mbaluka a chance to deliver for you as Senator.

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Kitui West MP Contest Becomes a Two-Horse Race as Muasya Leads Incumbent

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The Leading Kitui West MP Candidate Hon Ben Muasya who is ahead of the incumbent and is tipped to topple her.

The Kitui West MP Race has come down to a Two-Horse Race between the incumbent Edith Nyenze and the Incoming MP Hon Ben Muasya who is the obvious choice of majority of the Constituents. The People of Kitui West appear to have had enough of the Nyenze and Wambua Dynasties especially now with Mrs Nyenze is MP with her brother as Kitui Senator. The People are determined to elect Hon Ben Muasya as the Kitui West MP for a breath of fresh air, new ideas and better representation.

Kitui West Constituents have mainly been endeared to Hon Ben Muasya by his innovative development approach which has seen him pioneer key empowerment projects including table banking and small business support projects across Kitui West. In doing this, Hon Ben Muasya has been leveraging his strong credentials as a Management Consultant of international standing and leading businessman in the country. His projects have so far benefitted thousands of Kitui West Residents directly with many more benefiting indirectly.

In turn, this has caught the eyes of many including UDA Presidential Candidate and Deputy President Dr. William Ruto who has not only hailed Hon Ben Muasya Projects as a case study of how leaders can implement his Bottom Up Economic Model at the Constituency level to transform the lives of their constituents. As a result, the first trip Dr. William Ruto made to Kitui County was to Hon Ben Muasya’s home to engage with beneficiaries of his empowerment projects as well as to undertake a fundraising in support of scaling up the project.

Indeed, the popularity of Hon Ben Muasya has not only made all the potential opponents he had for the UDA ticket to switch to support him or defect to another party, it is said to be giving the incumbent MP sleepless nights. Having done nothing tangible with her CDF since taking over after the By-Election, Mrs Nyenze is hard-pressed to explain to wananchi in Kitui West how Hon Ben Muasya could do more than her in so short a time without the benefit of the CDF kitty.

Four months to the election and as party nomination draw near a close, Kitui West Residents are getting ready for a showdown between Hon Ben Muasya, the popular favourite as the newcomer, and Hon Edith Nyenze, who is weighed down by the weight of incumbency and voter apathy due to her unimpressive development record. The difference between these two leaders is like day and night. No question much is in store for Kitui West Residents and the next four months are going to be epic for Kitui West.

It is clear that Hon Ben Muasya is ready to turn things upside down to ensure service delivery for Kitui West residents. On the other hand, Mrs Nyenze is busy fighting to maintain the status quo and trying to defend her dismal record. She has tried everything including blaming the Covid-19 pandemic for her poor performance but Kitui West residents have had enough. Majority of Kitui West Residents are waiting for 9th August 2022 to usher in Hon Ben Muasya as their next MP.

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Friends of Ruto (FORM Kenya) Condemns Violence Against DP in Kisumu

Walter Trenk, Secretary General of FORM KENYA and the UDA Senatorial Aspirant for Nairobi County has condemned the chaos unleashed by hired goons to disrupt Ruto meeting in Kondele, Kisumu county.

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Image of one of the Cars in Ruto Entourage which was stoned by Hired Goons in Kondele, Kisumu County

We at FORM KENYA ( Friends of Ruto Movement – Kenya) do hereby wish to condemn, in the strongest terms possible, the cowardly acts of hooliganism and violence witnessed today in Kisumu during the Deputy President, Dr. William Ruto’s tour of the Nyanza region. We call upon the police to move with speed and arrest the perpetrators of the primitive acts of violence.

Violence and political intolerance has no place in our politics in the twenty first century. Every politician should be allowed to sell their agenda to every part of the country unhindered and without fear of intimidation or violence.

A few weeks ago, the Cabinet Secretary for Interior, Dr. Fred Matiang’i led a group of government functionaries in what was claimed to be a meeting to plan on ensuring that Kenyans are given a free, fair and credible election. An opportunity has presented itself for them to demonstrate to Kenyans and the entire world that they are ready, able and Wiling to live up to this onerous task.

We expect arrests and arraignment of the criminals within the next twenty four hours, failure of which, we will be left with no option but to believe that the government security agencies were involved in the macabre acts and are incapable of providing security to the citizens.

Walter Trenk, Secretary General, FORM KENYA & UDA Senatorial Aspirant, Nairobi County.

 

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