Prosecuting Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu was always going to be a tall order for Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji. The DPP has arraigned several high profile officials among them current and former governors.
But going for the second senior most person in the Judiciary? Haji was being too ambitious! The matter was even more complicated by the famous ‘revisiting the Judiciary statement’ made by President Uhuru Kenyatta in the aftermath of last year’s nullified elections.
And even though the DPP denied that arresting the DCJ had nothing to do with revisiting the Judiciary, it was not just going to go away. Kenyans on Social media fueled this angle more than once.
Some people also started talking about Maraga’s succession. The CJ is 67 and will be out of office before the next general elections. So who was going to succeed him? Was the arrest of Mwilu aimed at blocking her from succeeding Maraga?
All these complicated things for Haji. But this was just a tip of the ice bag. Things turned for the worse when 32 lawyers turned up in court to represent the maligned Supreme Court Judge.
Led by James Orengo and Kalonzo Musyoka, there was no way Haji was going to win this.
Another team of lawyers led by Nelson Havi moved to the high court to file a petition to have the charges dropped. Justice Chacha Mwita, who has made opposition friendly verdicts in the past was sitting on the bench, complicating things even more for the DPP.
And as expected, the High Court stopped criminal proceedings against Lady Justice Philomena Mwilu and lawyer Stanley Kiima.
According to Justice Chacha Mwita, her application raises significant questions that need to be addressed. In a ruling on Wednesday morning, the judge directed that the case be heard October 9, 2018.
Parties have been asked to file their responses and appear for inter-party hearing on the said date. Deputy CJ Philomena Mwilu had filed a petition before the High Court seeking to stop criminal proceedings against her over charges of abuse of office and graft.