Supreme Court resumes sittings, promises to reduce backlog of cases

Supreme Court resumes sittings, promises to reduce backlog of cases

The Supreme Court has promised to swiftly dispense with the 163 cases that are pending before it.

Speaking after the court’s first sitting in four months, the President of the Supreme Court, David Maraga, assured the public that the bench is dedicated to deliver justice.

The new CJ challenged the bar to appear in court well prepared as this would assist the court in developing sound judgments.

The court resolved to hold a meeting with stakeholders every year to deliberate on Judiciary issues, with the a daily sitting scheduled for 9am to fast-track the deliberation of pending cases.

The Director of Public Prosecution Keriako Tobiko asked the bench to discharge its critical role with utmost vigor, independence, fairness and impartiality.

“The Supreme Court just as all other courts must observe and respect the established principles of separation of power,” Tobiko said.

Together with the Law Society of Kenya chairman Isaac Okero, the DPP re-affirmed their commitment to fully cooperate with the Judiciary and all other state organs in transforming justice systems.

According to Maraga, the court will hear high priority cases continuously until December 15.

Earlier, Maraga officially launched the Children’s Service Week to deal with pending cases touching on children matters.

Maraga asked the public to accept the children after they have been released back to them from holding centers.

“Let us not be in the habit of stigmatising children, we should provide a good environment for them to rehabilitate, grow and develop,” Maraga said.

The court had not sat since June when former Chief Justice, Willy Mutunga, retired and the same court entered a judgment that saw the exit of Deputy Chief Justice Kalpana Rawal and Supreme Court Judge Philip Tunoi.

The law requires the court to have at least five judges for it to sit and make determinations.

Since the retirement of the three members, the court had only four judges: Justices Mohamed Ibrahim, Dr Smokin Wanjala, Professor Jackton Ojwang’ and Lady Justice Njoki Ndung’u.

But following the swearing in of CJ Maraga, Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu, and Supreme Court Judge Isaac Lenaola, the top court is now fully constituted.