Retired Chief Justice Willy Mutunga has thrust himself into the Judiciary under-funding debate sparked by a press conference held Monday by his successor David Maraga.
In his statement, Maraga, who holds a soft spot in the hearts of Kenyans for his commitment to justice delivery, exposed the unfair treatment that the Judiciary has recently been subjected to, especially in terms of allocation of resources.
Commenting on a video of Maraga’s rant shared on social media, his predecessor,Willy Mutunga, expressed his solidarity with the arm of government he formerly headed, decrying the lack of inclusiveness, equality, and equity among government functions.
“Neither the Executive nor Parliament own national resources. The Constitution does not say so,” Mutunga noted, wondering when the Country decided that the Judiciary is a lesser Arm of Government.
Neither the Executive nor Parliament OWN national resources. The Constitution does not say so! What do the values of inclusiveness, equality, and equity between the three arms mean?When did Kenyans decide that the Judiciary should be starved of funds? LET THE PEOPLE SPEAK!
— Dr Willy M Mutunga, Chief Justice, Kenya (2011-16) (@WMutunga) November 5, 2019
Even before the CJ’s Monday press address, reports of a financial crisis in the law enforcing arm had emerged, with several courts shutting down across the country due to Treasury imposed budgetary cuts.
Confirming the situation, Maraga said that other branches of the government, such as Parliament, are allocated extravagant amounts of resources such as sleek vehicles which, when the Judiciary makes requests for, are termed as wastage.
The agitated head of Judiciary further cried out over disrespect accorded to him on a personal level, saying he receives better treatment abroad than here at home.
Citing the Oct. 20 Mashujaa Day Celebrations as an example, Maraga narrated how, unlike other State officials, his presence was ignored by the master of ceremony, and that he had to use a sidewalk to get to the dais.
Other issues raised by Maraga include demeaning treatment by members of the Executive, who he says, have their clerks write official letters to him, instead of addressing him personally.
The CJ also pointed out that he had, in the past, been denied access to the VIP lounge at JKIA, despite at times having distinguished guests arriving in the country at his invitation.
“Where I’m I supposed to take them?” Maraga wondered.
He also alleged a plot by Cabinet to have him removed from office by the end of the year.