Economy

Judge freezes Maraga’s Parliament dissolution advisory

maragas

Chief Justice David Maraga. FILE PHOTO | NMG

BDgeneric_logo

Summary

  • Justice Weldon Korir certified the petition as urgent and directed the file to be taken to Justice Maraga for appointment of a Bench of judges to hear the case.
  • He said a perusal of the grounds in support of the petition discloses an arguable case.
  • Justice Korir reckoned that the decision by the CJ is expected to trigger action that could lead to the President disbanding Parliament.

The High Court Thursday suspended the advisory issued by Chief Justice David Maraga to President Kenyatta to dissolve Parliament for failing to enact the gender parity law.

Justice Weldon Korir certified the petition as urgent and directed the file to be taken to Justice Maraga for appointment of a Bench of judges to hear the case. He said a perusal of the grounds in support of the petition discloses an arguable case.

Justice Korir reckoned that the decision by the CJ is expected to trigger action that could lead to the President disbanding Parliament.

Justice Maraga, who is also the President of the Supreme Court, advised President Kenyatta on Monday to send MPs and senators home for failing to pass a law that ensures not more than two-thirds of the same gender hold elective and appointive public positions.

“The president is not bound by timelines and he can even act on the advice of the Chief Justice today. Once the President acts, irreversible events may follow,” the judge said.

Ms Leina Konchellah and Mr Mohsen Abdul Munasah sought temporary orders, suspending plans to dissolve Parliament, arguing that implementation of the advisory would lead to ‘unreasonable and absurd constitutional outcomes’.

Justice Korir said it was important to observe that it was in public interest not to subject the country to parliamentary elections before exhaustively interrogating the constitutionality of the CJ’s advisory.

Lawyer Adrian Kamotho also filed a similar petition arguing that Justice Maraga acted without powers in his advisory.

The lawyer argued that Article 261 of the Constitution does not envisage any scenario where the CJ is lobbied to dissolve Parliament.

The judge directed the case to be mentioned on October 7.

Earlier, Law Society of Kenya had petitioned the National Treasury to cease payment of salaries and allowances to MPs from October 12 following the advisory by Justice Maraga.