Judiciary team picks judges to determine poll petitions

Monday, August 1st, 2022 01:00 | By
Justice George Odunga. PHOTO/Courtesy
Justice George Odunga. PHOTO/Courtesy

Judiciary Committee on Election preparedness has already nominated judges and magistrates who would expeditiously handle petitions arising from the August 9 General Election.

Led by the Commission Chairman Justice Daniel Musinga of the Court of Appeal, the committee disclosed that the selected judges and magistrates are expected to be gazetted this week by Chief Justice Martha Koome.

Justice Musinga promised that  the committee would first-track the Electoral Dispute Resolution (EDR) matters within stipulated timelines.

“We are ready to handle the disputes ranging from presidential, governor, Senate, Woman Rep, MPs and MCA depending on the petitions filed. The Chief Justice will have to distribute them around the country,” Justice Musinga said.

In statement read by Justice George Odunga on behalf of Justice Musinga, the committee said the Judiciary is ready to handle all the disputes arising from the elections as judges, magistrate and judicial officers were trained on how to handle EDR matters and appraised on the changes to various electoral laws since February this year.

“All seven judges of the Supreme Court, 18 Court of Appeal judges, High Court 68 judges, 342 magistrates and Deputy Registrar participated in this trainings. Law clerks, legal researchers and selected court staff, all of whom play an integral part in judicial adjudication process, have also been trained, “ Justice Odunga said during a function in Machakos..

Set timelines

In a bid to enhance efficiency of EDR proces, the committee said it has developed a module of filing election cases in the Judiciary through the Integrated Cases Management System and E-filing system.

System will ensure that litigants are able to file matters remotely in view of strict EDR timelines.

“The case tracking system will also enable the Judiciary leadership track EDR matters to ensure they are determined in adherence with strict constitutional timelines to ensure electoral justice is not only done but seen to be done,” Odunga said.

However, the committee says the Chief Justice has since gazetted 120 magistrates to election offences courts.

This is in a view of the fact that election is a process and election offences may therefore be committed at any stage of the electoral process.

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