Ball in Parliament’s court as Uhuru forwards CJ nominee’s name for vetting
State House yesterday said President Uhuru Kenyatta has forwarded the name of Chief Justice nominee David Maraga to Parliament for vetting.
Judge Maraga was nominated by the Judicial Service Commission and his name was forwarded to the President last week. “We can confirm that the name of Judge Maraga was formally submitted to President Uhuru Kenyatta in the past week. The President has transmitted it to the National Assembly. We expect the National Assembly to consider the nomination when it resumes its sittings,” State House spokesman Manoah Esipisu said. The National Assembly will resume sittings tomorrow after a month-long recess.
The Public Appointments (Parliamentary Approvals)Act says the MPs have 14 days to consider and vet Maraga. “Unless otherwise provided in any law, a committee shall consider a nomination and table its report in the relevant House for debate and decision within 14 days from the date on which the notification of nomination was given,” the Act says.
During the first seven days, Parliament will be inviting the public to submit memoranda or any concerns they could be having against Maraga. The other seven will be used by the committee to grill the nominee.
The law says after the legislators concludes the vetting, the committee shall prepare its report on the suitability of the candidate to be appointed to the office.
If Parliament will not act on nomination at the expiry of the 14 days, it will have neither approved nor rejected the nomination and the candidate shall be deemed to have been approved.
However, If MPs reject the nominee, the President will submit to the House the name of another candidate.
On the expiry of the 14 vetting days, the Clerk of the National Assembly will have seven days to notify the President on the decision of the House. Maraga, 65, will take over from Willy Mutunga, who retired in June. He was among 11 judges shortlisted by the JSC.