Lady Justice Martha Koome is this morning set to face MPs at County hall for vetting for the position of Chief Justice.
Koome who is poised to make history by becoming the first female Chief Justice will appear before the National Assembly Justice and Legal Affairs Committee (JLAC) at 10 am.
The committee chaired by Kangema MP Muturi Kigano will cross-examine the Court of Appeal Judge to assess her suitability to head Judiciary. If approved she will become Kenya’s 15th Chief Justice.
Procedurally, the legislators will scrutinize her documents which include original identity card and academic and professional certificates, testimonials and letters or certificates of clearance from the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission, the Kenya Revenue Authority, the Higher Education Loans Board, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations and any Credit Reference Bureaus.
The team has 28 days to report its findings to the House.
In a gazette notice dated April 30, 2021, National Assembly Clerk Michael Sialai invited members of the public to submit any written statements in the form of sworn affidavits that they may have on Koome.
“Pursuant to the provisions of section 6(4) of the public appointments (Parliamentary Approval Act No 33 of 2011) the general public is hereby notified that the Departmental Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs shall conduct approval hearing (vetting) of the nominee for appointment as the Chief Justice of the Republic of Kenya and the President of the Supreme Court on Thursday, May 13, 2021 in the mini chamber, County Hall,” states the notice.
“Now, therefore… the committee invites interested members of the public to submit any representations they may have, by written statements (affidavits) with supporting evidence on the suitability or otherwise of the nominee for appointment to the office,” it adds.
Law Society of Kenya President Nelson Havi is among those who have filed a memorandum on the suitability of the CJ nominee. Havi has questioned some of the past rulings by Lady Justice Koome.
Koome who expressed her gratitude to the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) for nominating her two weeks ago to succeed retired Chief Justice David Maraga, assured Kenyans of her unwavering commitment to serve them to the best of her abilities.
She was among 10 candidates interviewed by the JSC.
“As I prepare for the next stage, l wish to convey my profound gratitude to all well-wishers who encouraged and prayed for me as I continue to thank God and seek your prayers as l go through the confirmation process,” she added.