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What is ailing our judiciary

26 August 2013, 14:52 Paul Orodi

In any event, there must be someone who is pulling the strings. Infact there must be two characters; one who is causing harm and the one who is trying to mitigate. Either of the two camps has the final victory depending on the circumstance.

Kenyans, generally, have been pleased with the current reforms taking place in the judiciary. However, there seems to be some forces who are trying to impede the whole process by imposing their interests on the reform agenda.

Whenever systems change, there always must be a camp that doesn’t support the process. It is human nature to have people in an organisation resisting the change being implemented. Taking a closer look at what is going on at the department of justice, it is obvious that there are forces who are not ready to embrace the new structure and operations of the judiciary.

Since independence, 2011 saw the first time Kenya has ever had an adminiistrative officer at the judiciary better known as the chief registrar. The office of the chief registrar matches that of the chief executive officer of an entity. Bringing in an administrator to oversee affairs at the justice department was one of the many ways that was seen as a reform tactic to restore the image of the then rotten sector.

Gladys Boss Shollei was appointed as the first ever registrar of the judiciary after failing to cut it in the contest as the deputy chief justice. After having served in the UNEP and Interim Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission as deputy CEO she was percieved as the best fit candidate to hold the position.

Nonetheless, just about two years after taking charge, she has been labelled with all sorts of allegations ranging from high handedness to mismanagement of funds. How true these allegations are is subject to investigations and reasonable conclusions by her employer and other relevant agencies.

Shollei fights back

Even with numerous allegations leveled against her, the accomplished lawyer has reiterated that the allegations are malicious and have no base. She has gone further to claim that some of the Judicial Service Commission members, who happen to be her employers, have constantly witchhunted her to ensure that she gets out of office due to her strong focus on reforming the judiciary. In addition she has named some of the commissioners sitting in the JSC who have repeatedly taunted her for not heeding to their calls for certain favours that she claims are personal and amount to improper conduct of state officers.

With all these scenarios taking place in a sector that should be leading the reform agenda and setting pace, it is clear that there are some characters who are aiding in reform while others are back peddling. All it takes is proper investigations by relevant agencies to establish who played what role where, when and why. In my view, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption agency needs to lead the charge in trying to dig into this fiasco that is now impeding the reform process.

Claims must have origins and where there is smoke there is fire. Between Gladys Shollei who is now on compulsory leave and the JSC commissioners, there must be someone telling the truth while the other is trying to cover up the whole rot in the judiciary top machineries. Who between the two camps is telling the truth is subject to very critical investigations and proper findings being arrived at so as to clear the whole melee that has now drawn attention of the entire country.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

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