Siaya Governor James Orengo has criticized President Uhuru Kenyatta for his failure to appoint six judges nominated by the Judicial Service Commission in 2019. In a statement shortly after the judges were sworn in on Wednesday, the lead attorney said there was no justification for the former president's failure to make the appointment.
“There was absolutely no justification for thwarting the appointment of the Court of Appeals judges, some of the finest legal minds. Kudos to Muchelule, Korir, Ngugi, Makori and Omange,” said Orengo.
President William Ruto made the appointment of the judges his first assignment Tuesday, shortly after taking the oath of office.The new president announced the appointment of the judges on Tuesday and oversaw their swearing-in at the State House in Nairobi on Wednesday.
Justices Weldon Korir, George Odunga, Aggrey Muchelule and Joel Ngugi were sworn in as Appellate Justices, while Evans Makori and Judith Orange were sworn in as Environmental Court Justices. The event was witnessed by former Chief Justice David Maraga.
“And Maraga was there to see it all. An independent judiciary is paramount,” Orengo said. When he refused to appoint the judges, who were appointed along with 34 others in 2019, Uhuru said the six judges had integrity issues hanging over their heads.
In a note accompanying the Gazette's notice of the appointment of the 34 judges in June 2021, Uhuru said the six nominees had not met the threshold and would be referred back to JSC.
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