The Kenya Magistrates and Judges Association and the LSK on Saturday lashed out at President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto over threats on Supreme Court Judges.
While KMJA criticized Uhuru for making derogatory attacks that border on threats to the judiciary, LSK said it is unfortunate and wholly inappropriate remarks from a head of state who is a symbol of unity.
KMJA Secretary General Bryan Khaemba said the Uhuru’s disparaging remarks at a political rally in Burma market, on Friday and Statehouse Nairobi on Saturday, are veil threats.
Uhuru referred the Chief Justice David Maraga and the other Supreme Court judges as “wakora” (thugs, imbeciles, idiots, scum of the earth ) while addressing his supporters at Burma.
“Maraga (CJ) anjue ya kwamba anadeal na rais yule amekalia kiti”,” Uhuru said.
This loosely translates to,”Maraga should know that he is now dealing with a sitting president”.
A majority of the Supreme Court nullified Uhuru’s election win during the August 8 presidential polls and ordered IEBC to conduct a fresh presidential election within 60 days.
Khaemba said prior consensus among a wider cross section of Kenyans that the courts were the ideal forum for resolution of electoral disputes and Uhuru should respect it.
Kenyatta loses his temper
“I believe the will and the choice of Kenyans will prevail. They will prove the ruling of the four judges wrong,” said President Kenyatta in reference to the split 4-2 Supreme Court ruling.
The President spoke when he addressed people at Burma Market, Jua Kali and Muthurwa in Nairobi on his first meet-the-people-tour ahead of hitting the campaign trail once again.
President Kenyatta said there was no need for Kenyans to fight with each other over the election, saying they should continue with their daily activities peaceful even as the country prepares for another round of presidential election.
“I urge every Kenyan, shake hands with your neighbours and tell them that it does not matter what tribe they belong to, their political affiliation, religion or colour, we are all Kenyans and what is important is peace,” said the President.
The President said despite his misgivings, he will abide by the Supreme Court’s ruling, which directed the electoral agency IEBC to hold fresh elections within 60 days.
President Kenyatta thanked Kenyans for voting overwhelming for the Jubilee Party and urged them to uphold peace as the country prepares to go for a second round of presidential election.
He said the Court’s ruling has given him a chance to continue serving Kenyans as a sitting President and not as a President-elect. Top on his agenda is working with Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko to transform the city county.
“Be prepared to see rehabilitation of Burma Market, cleaning up of the city and improvement of roads. And we will start this work in the Eastlands area where a majority of the residents live,” President Kenyatta said.
Deputy President Ruto said Kenyans are ready to endorse their choice and called on the IEBC to set a date for Round Two of the Presidential election, saying this time Jubilee will win with over 70 per cent.
The Deputy President said Jubilee is ready for a fresh election and Kenyans will get a chance to express their sovereign will to shame those who refused to concede defeat.
“On 8 August we defeated our competitors, Kenyans voted for a majority of Jubilee candidates in the position of governors, senators, women representatives and members of county assembly. We are now telling the IEBC to put up a new timetable for election and we will again win with majority, this time round not with 54 per cent but with over 70 per cent,” said the Deputy President.
The President and Deputy President were accompanied by a host of Jubilee leaders including Governors Mike Mbuvi Sonko (Nairobi), Samuel Ole Tunai (Narok) and Moses Lenolkulal (Samburu), National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale and Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen.
Judges association fires back
“We condemn this assault on the decisional independence of the honourable judges. In the same vein, we hasten to add that robust and focused critiques of the awaited reasoned judgement of the Supreme Court by all interested parties will be well in order,” Khaemba said.
He said, “However, we ask Kenyans especially the political class to desist from personal profiling of judicial officers who are engaged in their constitutionally ordained duties.”
Khaemba assured that judges and magistrates are ready and committed to resolving all the other impending electoral cases at various levels with fairness, diligence and absolute fidelity to the law as required.
The Law Society of Kenya also said Uhuru’s remarks declaring that judges should wait for him after he is successful in the fresh elections are unfortunate and inappropriate.
LSK president Isaac Okero said the president is obliged to respect, uphold and safeguard the constitution.
“Those remarks violate this obligation and are condemned unreservedly by the LSK. They do not in any way lower, in the eyes of their fellow Kenyan citizens, the high esteem in which the Chief Justice and the judges of the Supreme Court of Kenya are held. The court has performed its duty,” Okero said in statement to newsrooms.
He said the president enjoys immunity from civil and criminal proceedings and must, therefore, promote and enhance the unity of the nation.