Residents of Mwiteria village in Meru town erupted in celebration on Monday evening after news of Justice Martha Koome’s nomination to succeed retired Chief Justice David Maraga.
Her elder brother Mwenda Ruteere said they were overjoyed when they received the news adding that if appointed, Justice Koome would have achieved her dream.
“She was determined to get to the top of the justice system and we are very happy for her,” Mr Ruteere said in an interview with Nation.
Justice Koome grew up in the village with Mr Ruteere saying she was a bright student throughout her life in school and a courageous woman when she joined the judiciary.
“She is also very humble and I believe this is what has won her this nomination. We pray that she will finally be appointed,” said Mr Ruteere, a retired inspector who worked for the Meru county government until 2019.
During the interview, Mr Ruteere called Justice Koome to congratulate her on her nomination, with the judge expressing confidence that she was up to the task.
“I thank God for the nomination. The interview was not easy but it was good that they found me capable of the task. If the President appoints me I am ready to reform and transform the judiciary,” she said in the telephone conversation.
The villagers said they were impressed by her performance during the interviews conducted by the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) and were hopeful that she would emerge top.
JSC unanimously agreed to nominate Justice Koome as the next CJ.
“She was very articulate and I was confident that she would emerge the best. We are happy that a woman from our village is on the verge of becoming the first woman Chief Justice in Kenya. This area will now get into the limelight that we expect will also bring about development,” said Ms Mercy Kathure, a resident.