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CJ Koome inaugurates tribunal to probe Chitembwe » Capital News

NAIROBI, Kenya, May 25 — Chief Justice Martha Koome has this morning presided over the swearing-in of the Special Tribunal to inquire into the conduct of High Court Judge Said Juma Chitembwe.

Koome told members of the Tribunal in a ceremony held at the Supreme Court on Wednesday, that Article 168 of the Constitution demands they conduct proceedings transparently, fairly and without any bias, whether real or perceived.

“I have no doubt in my mind that the President had good reasons for appointing you given that you are distinguished professionals in your various professions. I therefore have confidence that you will perform the task before you in accordance with the law and fairness given that our Constitution venerates the cardinal value and principle of justice,” she said.

Tribunal members committed to abide by the law and serve the country to the best of their abilities bearing in mind the enormous responsibility placed upon them. 

The membership of Tribunal chaired by Lady Justice Mumbi Ngugi includes Dr Fred Ojiambo, SC, Lady Justice Abida Ali Aroni, Justice Nzioki wa Makau, James Ochieng’ OduolLt. Gen. (Rtd.) Jackson W. Ndung’u and Dr. Lydia Nzomo.

Lady Justice Mumbi Ngugi takes an oath as Chairperson of the Tribunal to probe Justice Chitembwe’s conduct/Judiciary Media Service

Mumbi, on behalf of the members of the tribunal, said they will obey the oath they had taken and discharge their duties without fear of favour or evil and in a manner that will bring honour both to the judiciary and to the country.

“I look forward to working with you and I know we will do our work in harmony and achieve the results that the dictates of our constitution will take us to,” she said.

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Members of the Ngugi-led Tribunal pose for a group photo with Chief Justice Martha Koome/Judiciary Media Service

Also sworn in were Lead Counsel is Kiragu Kimani, SC, and Jasper M. Mbiuki and Sarah Yamo who took oath as Joint Secretaries.  Joseph Gitonga Riungu and Edward Omotii Nyang’au will work as Assisting Counsel.

The tribunal was appointed following a recommendation by the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) which noted that the allegations of gross misconduct on the part of a judge erode the faith of Kenyans in the fair administration of justice.

Justice Chitembwe’s woes began after former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko, who was the main complainant in the petition seeking his removal, accused him of corruption.

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Chitembwe dismissed the allegations saying that he was being unfairly targeted.

He was suspended from office with immediate effect when President Uhuru Kenyatta appointed the Tribunal on May 19, 2022.

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