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Kenya: 28 New High Court Judges Appointed

Kenya’s Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has appointed 28 new High Court Judges to help in clearing case backlogs as well as usher in much anticipated reform in the Kenyan judiciary.

“The recruitment of these 28 candidates was done in strict compliance with the provisions of the constitution and the Judicial Service Act,” said Hon. Justice Dr. Willy M. Mutunga, JSC, Chairman and Kenya’s Chief Justice.

Dr Mutunga explained that “during all the facets of the process, the Judicial Service Commission was guided by the constitutional values of transparency, openness, fidelity to the law, and we were alive to our obligations to the people of Kenya.”

He said they picked a rich diversity of candidates as decreed by the constitution and law. Judges of differing gender, ethnicity, county, generation and minority were selected.

“The new judges reflect this diversity,” said Dr Mutunga, adding “we have recruited 14 women, two Kenyans in the foreign and regional diaspora, a Kenyan European, a woman with albinism, 11 serving magistrates and these representatives are also from various counties and nationalities.”

Dr Munga said that the process of recruiting the 28 was a “thorough, intensive, marathon interview process of 115 candidates who applied for the office of High Court judge that lasted eight weeks.”

He termed those who were picked to be “excellent candidates who will serve as judges of the High Court of Kenya. In our views all the candidates have the right credentials that will come in handy in their appointment.”

According to the Chief Justice they did the necessary background check-up on all the candidates, set and then interviewed them on an agreed criteria, and conducted the interview process in an open and transparent manner.

“We invited Kenyans with any negative or positive information on all 115 candidates who applied to come forward,” he further explained. “Kenyans have volunteered useful information. Some Kenyans have also sat and observed the process for themselves. The media covered the process on a day to day basis and we are very grateful about the performance of this national duty by the media.”

The JSC said the 28 were the “best candidates using the various criteria set out by the constitution and the law. We considered academic backgrounds, the professional experience of the candidate, and personal integrity of the candidates.”

Additionally, Dr Mutunga said they “picked the candidates from the magistracy, from practising advocates and lawyers in the public service. This rich mix of background in our view will come in handy during this era of reform in the judiciary.”

The new judges of the High court of Kenya are:

  1. Prof. Njugi Joel Mwaura
  2. Ms. Ngugi Grace Mumbi
  3. Mr. Mutava Joseph Mbulu
  4. Mr. Muriithi Edward Muthoga
  5. Ms. Nyamweya Pauline
  6. Mr. Kimondo George Kanyi
  7. Mr. Majanja David Amilcar Shikomera
  8. Mrs. Ghithua Cecilia Wathaiya
  9. Mrs. Jaden Thuranira Beatrice Nthiori
  10. Mr. Korir Weldon Kipyegon
  11. Mrs. Grace Lidembu Nzioka
  12. Mrs. Meoli Christine Wanjiku
  13. Mrs. Ong’undi Hedwig Imbosa
  14. Ms. Mutuku Stella Ngali
  15. Mr. Wakiaga James
  16. Mrs. Ougo Rose Wdwina Atieno
  17. Mr. Ogola Erick Kennedy Okumu
  18. Mr. Odunga George Vincent
  19. Mrs. Stella Munai Muketi
  20. Mr. Havelock Jonathan Bowen
  21. Mr. Chemitei Hilary Kiplagat
  22. Mr. Makau James Aaron
  23. Mr. Tuoiyot Francis
  24. Mrs. Korir Roseline Cherotich lagat
  25. Mr. Mwongo Richard Mururu
  26. Mr. Mabaya Alfred
  27. Mrs. Achode Lydia Awino
  28. Mrs. Mshila Abigail

Among the recent changes that will welcome the new High Court judges are computerized court operations and Dr Mutunga is leading an initiative to interact with the public through social media.

About Robert Okemwa Onsare

Robert Okemwa Onsare
Robert Onsare is pursuing Electronics Technology at the University of Eastern Africa, Baraton. He is a Cluster Strategy trained facilitator by Kenya's National Economic and Social Council (NESC). Mr Onsare has been an incubation student at the University of Nairobi, School of Engineering, FabLab, a venture project of the university and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He is a member of the African Technology Policy Studies Network (ATPS) and a published poet. Mr Onsare is based in Kenya.

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