Strong Judiciary good for economy, says President

President William Ruto and Chief Justice Martha Koome at State House, Nairobi on May 14, 2024. [PCS, Standard]

The Executive will continue to support the Judiciary to serve Kenyans better, President William Ruto has said. 

Speaking yesterday during the swearing-in of 20 judges of the High Court at State House, Nairobi, the President noted that the country’s economy and security, and the people's rights and freedoms depend on the Judiciary. 

"We shall make our contribution to enhance the capacity of the Judiciary to deliver justice in every part of Kenya, especially through infrastructure development projects," he said. 

To support these efforts, the President noted that funding for the justice and law and order sector to combat corruption and promote accountability has increased from Sh87 billion to Sh108 billion since the 2022/2023 financial year.

"Some of these resources have contributed to the Judiciary’s infrastructure development, including construction of courts, staff recruitment and capacity building for law enforcement agencies," he said. 

"I am happy that the establishment of Small Claims Courts across the country has brought justice closer to the people and resulted in a significant increase in the number of resolved cases."

President Ruto expressed confidence that the three arms of government - Executive, Legislature and Judiciary - would continue engaging in a progressive manner and finding consensus in ways that serve the citizens better. 

Three arms

The President said the Bottom Up Economic Transformation Agenda acknowledges the critical role played by institutions of governance, especially a strong and effective Judiciary in Kenya's progress and inclusive prosperity. 

"An independent Judiciary, an effective Executive, a progressive Legislature, an open civil society and a vigilant media are not mutually exclusive; instead, they share the mandate to serve the people and should complement one another's efforts," said Ruto.

He pointed out that this collaboration must extend to accountability and transparency, saying this is why the Public Benefits Organisations Act, 2013, was operationalised last week.

"By unifying regulations and promoting participatory governance, we aim to increase accountability and transparency across all arms of government," he said. 

"Ultimately, we will be judged not by how we serve the strong and influential, but by how we support the weak, the poor, and the vulnerable."

At the same time, President Ruto asked judges to reject any form of corruption. "I encourage you to commit yourselves to serving the people with integrity and professionalism, and to reject corruption in all its manifestations," he said. 

Without integrity, he pointed out, the credibility of the Judiciary, as well as all public institutions, would be severely questioned.

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