Former Chief Justice David Maraga has revealed that the names of judges rejected by President Uhuru Kenyatta initially are not the same ones presented to him for approval recently.
Speaking to a local station on Wednesday, Maraga said President Uhuru was wrong in rejecting the names of the six judges.
“I confirm that the names have changed. Some have been added to that list (of those who were said to have integrity issues),some have been removed. For the good of persons concerned I won’t name them,” the former CJ said.
With the “corrupt” tag on their heads, Maraga says their every decision the judges make will be scrutinized by Kenyans. “You cannot condemn somebody unheard, that is very wrong. How will they continue to serve?” Maraga posed.
The four judges include Justices Joel Ngugi, George Odunga, Aggrey Muchelule and Weldon Korir.
Maraga said he supports former CJ Willy Mutunga’s sentiments towards the President over the matter. In his hard-hitting letter published on Twitter yesterday, Mutunga said, “I have elected to speak elaborately and strongly on this issue because when apparently innocuous and blithe breaches to the Constitution begin to occur, especially from the highest office in the land, they signal a dangerous dalliance with impunity.”
During his tenure, Marag had a rocky relationship with President Kenyatta. He often took to the media to “vent” his frustrations.
In the contentious judges appointment matter, Maraga in 2020 said failure to appoint the 41 judges contributed to the backlog in court cases.
“The courts ruled that the President cannot change the list, review or reject the names…Once the JSC makes recommendations the President has no other options but to formalise the appointments,” Maraga said at the time.
In his retirement, Maraga said that he would remember the President as a leader with no regard to the law. “I will remember him as a president who has no regard for the law,” Maraga said.