Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru and Chief Justice Martha Koome have told Deputy President William Ruto’s allies to stop panicking over her involvement in 2022 election preparations.
The CJ, in a response to a letter by United Democratic Alliance secretary general Veronicah Maina, insisted that her participation in the committee tasked with overseeing polls preparations does not threaten the independence of the Judiciary. Through her office’s Chief of Staff Rose Macharia, she said the National Multi-Sectoral Consultative Forum on Election Preparedness is not a new platform.
“The forum has been constituted to secure preparedness and has involved the participation of heads of ministries, agencies and departments in previous election cycles, including former chief justices,” stated Ms Macharia, adding that the Judiciary cannot work in isolation.
Ms Maina, in the letter dated November 24, had told the CJ that “…your continued involvement in the Technical Working Committee is likely to interfere with and shall threaten free and fair elections come 2022 ...”
She had argued that the CJ’s engagement was likely to jeopardise the independence of the Judiciary in hearing and determining poll disputes.
But Ms Macharia said the CJ’s involvement in the team rather enhances the preparedness of the Judiciary to enforce the constitutional requirements regarding electoral justice.
Hence, she told Ms Maina that the CJ’s engagement should be properly contextualised as she does not sit in the technical working committee as implied in the SG’s letter.
Elsewhere, ICT Cabinet Secretary Mucheru, in an apparent reference to Dr Ruto said the Deputy President had moved from a “chest-thumping presidential candidate to a panicky crybaby. These were the same people who said that even if you make Oburu Oginga (Eala member and a brother to presidential contender Raila Odinga) the chair of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, they would still win. So what has changed now that they are suddenly panicking and creating a lot of unnecessary noise?” Mr Mucheru asked.