The Judiciary has recalled all Court of Appeal judges operating outside Nairobi over lack of enough judges.
In a statement sent to newsrooms Friday morning, Court of Appeal President Justice William Ouko disclosed that this was occasioned by the retirement of several Judges, the appointment of others to higher Government offices, and the sudden death of Justice James Otieno Odek.
As a result, judges in Kisumu and Mombasa will relocate to Nairobi as from January 13 next year.
The statement in part read “Pursuant to the provisions of section 13 of the Court of Appeal Act, 2015 and in consultation with the Hon. The Chief Justice, it has been decided that, as long as the situation with regard to the number of Judges in the Court of Appeal remains, the sittings of the Court outside Nairobi are suspended with effect from 13th January 2020.”
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The 3 affected stations will now be run from Nairobi through circuit sessions to be conducted once every month to each station, the statement read.
According to Justice Ouko, the number of appellate judges has gradually shrunk from 27 to 15 in a short span of time.
The country now has only 12 judges in the Court of Appeal who sit full-time and out of the 12 three are serving in Mombasa and three, until the passing on of Justice Odek, were serving in Kisumu.
Chief Justice David Maraga had earlier expressed fears that the operations of at the corridors of justice would be severely affected following a proposal by the treasury to drastically revise allocations to the judiciary.
The Judicial Service Commission has termed the delay by the executive to formally appoint 41 Judges as a threat to its constitutional role to safeguard and promote the independence of the Judiciary.
President Kenyatta declined to formally appoint the judges citing integrity issues on some of the nominees.
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