Maraga mum on deputy's troubles

Chief Justice David Maraga during a press conference in Nairobi on Wednesday 29 2018.  [David Njaaga,Standard]

Chief Justice David Maraga yesterday remained silent on the tribulations facing his deputy Philomena Mwilu.

Mr Maraga declined to respond to questions filed by journalists at the Supreme Court offices shortly after he presided over the swearing-in of National Gender and Equality Commission members.

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“You want me to comment on a matter before the court?” the CJ said when asked to explain what Ms Mwilu's arrest and subsequent arraignment meant.

Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji on Tuesday said he had informed Maraga of the arrest and when asked if this was true, he responded, “Yes, he did.” However, he did not state whether or not he approved of what had happened.

There are also reports that three more judges have been targeted by detectives over graft claims.

Pressed to reveal if he was aware of the impending probe before investigators pounced on his deputy, the CJ replied: “Let’s just leave it there.”

And asked if the development was a setback given he recently named Mwilu to head a team investigating claims of corruption in the Judiciary, he said, “She has always performed the duty of Judiciary ombudsman and that has not changed.”

Criminal case

Among the queries that the CJ was confronted with but ignored was the issue of quorum in the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) amid fears that the body is now crippled.

There are concerns that if Mwilu takes a plea in the criminal case facing her, she may technically be locked out of the commission, thereby denying the CJ numbers from the Judiciary given that Court of Appeal representative Mohamed Warsame is yet to be sworn in.

Through lawyer Okong’o Omogeni, Mwilu yesterday told the High Court that she had not been informed of any criminal investigations and only learnt about them from media reports.

The DCJ accused Mr Haji and Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti of malice, claiming they conducted their probe in the media first.

“We have demonstrated that there is bad faith and can be seen in their conduct. They released news to the media even before she was arrested. The statement of consent to prosecute was made yesterday (Tuesday) but the story was leaked on 27th of August (a day before),” Mr Omogeni said.

Justice Chacha Mwita yesterday stopped Mwilu's prosecution in a lower cour

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CJ MaragaDCJ MwiluPhilomena Mwilu ArrestedDPP Noordin Haji