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We can’t talk about judicial independence yet we bully Chief Justice at slightest opportunity

By Clay Muganda | July 25th 2021

Clay Muganda caricature. [Gamzzoh, Standard]

To write that Kenya’s economy is tanking and it is one of the reasons Kenyans are angry would not be so far from the truth, but it would be a lie to say that it is the only reason.

Initially, corruption used to be the golden thread that tied Kenyans together considering that it has been normalised. Nowadays though, anger has taken over, and we get outraged at the slightest opportunity.

We are mad at everyone, more so at the equally annoyed politicians and other State officers, so much so that their failure to sneeze annoys us and when they do, we get angrier.

The problem is, we want them to do things exactly in our own ways, to the minutest details. This is what happened on Friday when a section of Kenyans started getting their clothes in a twist that the Chief Justice had not commented about the previous evening’s arrest of two High Court judges. 

Chief Justice Martha Koome. [Edward Kiplimo, Standard]

People wanted her to issue a statement the moment law enforcement officers entered the judges’ Chambers. In their minds, they had the exact words they wanted her to use.

By Friday morning, she had not issued a statement, and people got angrier. By midday when the statement was out, they got more annoyed because the words they had in their minds were not in the statement.

This is not the first time in her short period at the helm of the Judiciary that Kenyans are getting annoyed at Martha Koome and expecting her to do things in their way.

As it has been pointed out before on this page, we need to give the new CJ time to do things her way as long as they do not contravene the law. People have their own styles and our continued haranguing is akin to bullying.

Actually, it is bullying. And we cannot be saying that the Judiciary needs to be independent when all we do is push the Chief Justice into a corner with vitriol and invectives because we want her to sneeze in our style.  

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