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CJ Koome: Judiciary making access to justice a reality

Chief Justice Martha Koome said Thursday that the Judiciary is steadily fulfilling its commitment to ensure access to justice by all Kenyans, no matter where they are.

Speaking when she presided over the inauguration of the new Maralal Law Courts building in Samburu County, Koome said the judiciary is keen to fulfill the desires and expectations of every citizen to be treated justly.

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“We are not merely unveiling a building made of brick and mortar. Instead, we are unveiling a beacon of hope, a symbol of justice, and a testament to our unwavering commitment to bring the justice system closer to our people,” CJ Koome said even as she unveiled a High Court sub-registry, e-filing, and the Alternatives Justice Systems (AJS) ‘Loip’ Suite at Maralal Law Courts in Samburu County.

She said the launch of the High Court sub-registry in Samburu will significantly reduce the distance covered by litigants to approximately 100 kilometres, as envisaged under Social Transformation through Access to Justice blueprint since the distance to the nearest High Court located at Nanyuki is over 300 kilometers.

What’s more, she said the operationalization of the digital filing of cases in Samburu will also benefit locals a great deal.

“Brick and mortar are crucial but not adequate in our journey towards a transformative, effective, and efficient justice system. And this is why we are embracing the power of technology, harnessing its potential to ensure that justice is not only meted but is seen to be done swiftly, transparently, and impartially,” The CJ said.

She said that the e-filing system is designed to streamline the process of filing of cases and pleadings, track the case, and improve the overall experience for litigants and legal practitioners.

“With the launch of this e-filing system in Samburu county, we are embracing the principles of transparency, accountability, and responsiveness, which are fundamental to the rule of law and the administration of justice,” CJ Koome emphasised.

Justice Koome noted that the Judiciary e-filing system had been integrated with the Uadilifu e-system operated by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) and it is expected that other justice sector agencies will also create interoperability.

Speaking during the function Samburu Governor Jonathan Lati Lelelit noted that Samburu County was one of the largest counties, yet it only had one court in Maralal.

“We are willing to provide land and build courts in Wamba and Baragoi but I urge the Chief Justice to post magistrates in these areas to especially deal with land matters,” Governor Lelelit said.

The Chief Justice said that the launch of the High Court building was a manifestation of collective ambition to foster Social Transformation through Access to Justice.

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