First Kenyan Interviewed For Retired Chief Justice Maraga's Position

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The Judicial Service Commission which is made up of 6 commissioners including Acting Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu is this morning conducting an interview of the first Kenyan seeking to become the third Chief Justice of Kenya since the promulgation of the 2010 constitution.

Retired Chief Justice David Maraga [Photo/Courtesy]

Justice Chitembwe Said Juma is on the hot seat today, 12 April 2021. Chitembwe is among the 10 finalists who have been shortlisted. The others are; SC Philip Murgor, Prof Kameri Mbote, Lady Justice Martha Koome, Justice Marete Njagi, Hon Justice Nduma, SC Fred Ngatia, Justice William Ouko, Prof Wekesa Moni and Ms Yano Alice Jepkoech.

Justice Chitembwe was born in 1976 in Kwale county. With over 29 years of service in the legal profession. He was appointed as a High Court judge in 2009 and is currently working as a High Court judge in Nairobi, the Civil Division. He previously worked in the same capacity in Kakamega, Meru, Malindi and Marsabit. He also served as Corporation Secretary at NSSF between 2003 and 2009.

Mr Chitembwe was also the proprietor of Chitembwe and Company Advocates between 1994 and 2003 which he established after working as an advocate at Kiogora Mutai & Company Advocates between 1993 and 1994.

Justice Chitembwe Said Juma [Photo/Courtesy]

These are the academic qualifications of Justice Chitembwe who is currently pursuing a PhD in Peace and Conflict Studies at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology. He holds an Executive Master of Business Administration from moi University (2005), Master of Laws from University of Essex (1994), Bachelor of Laws from University of Nairobi (1990) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Law from the Kenya School of Law (1991).

In his career, Justice Chitembwe Said Juma was arrested by the Anti-Corruption Commission in 2009, after graft allegations. The honourable judge was accused of fraudulent payments using public resources.

In his interview today, while responding to Justice Warsame's question, Chitembwe stated that he doesn't think there is any problem at the Supreme Court of Kenya, and the only thing he would work to streamline is the public perception of the Judiciary.

Hon Chitembwe was also asked about what he would do to make sure that the 41 names that were forwarded to the President of Kenya for appointment as judges are sworn in. He responded by stating that he would first sit down with the President in order to understand why the judges have not been sworn in.

The interview is currently ongoing and is being aired on major television stations in the country, and also on the social media pages of the Judicial Service Commission. The next interview will be tomorrow at 9 a.m, at the Supreme Court Grounds, with Professor Kameri Mbote.

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