Chief Justice David Maraga on early Monday accused President Uhuru Kenyatta’s government of sidelining the third arm of government. Lashing out at acting Cabinet Secretary for National Treasury, Ukur Yatani, he accused the CS of overstepping his mandate by trying to control the budget of the Judiciary.
During a press briefing, the CJ expressed dissatisfaction at the Executive following a cut in the Judiciary’s budget.“Unless the budget cuts are reversed, we do not have money for fuel, we will not have mobile courts, we will not have the court of Appeal circuits, we will not be able to pay for wi-fi for the e-filing and e-payments, plans to automate corruption courts will halt.” He stated. He said the National Treasury does not have any power to tamper with the funds allocated to the Judiciary once it has been passed by the Parliament. “None of the three arms of government should control another.”
Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yattani had last month issued a directive proposing drastic budgetary cuts on recurring and development budget of up to 50 per cent in the Judiciary.
Maraga also claims officials, who include Cabinet Secretaries and their Principal Secretaries want him out of the Judiciary. “I’m told that some CSs are PSs are bragging around that the CJ will or should be removed in the office before the end of this year. Really? Kumbe hii nchi iko na wenyewe?” Maraga told the press.
Maraga claims he has been receiving ill treatment from the government with a recent case of his humiliation during the Mashujaa Day celebrations at the Mama Ngina Waterfront in Mombasa County. According to him, protocol was not followed seeing as he was not recognised at te state function like other junior officials in government who attended the event.“The CJ is not accorded the respect accorded to his office. Cabinet Secretaries and Principal Secretaries are cleared to enter in places before the Chief Justice. Unless I’m treated with the respect I deserve, I will choose state functions to attend,” Maraga said.
Maraga also highlighted the issue on 232 top-of-the-range vehicles which the Judiciary intends to buy at a cost Sh11 million each. “The CJ has no Mercedes car, we were told its wastage yet the two Speakers of the National Assembly have them. I have a Mercedes 350, which is affordable to many while Speakers of both Houses have Mercedes 500. I have never owned a Mercedes myself and I’m not bothered. Let the office be treated like the Speaker’ and Uhuru’s office. We should not be taken to be like illegitimate children,” The man’s rant continued.
Speaking after the rant Senate majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen on Monday, November 4, 2019, asked Chief Justice David Maraga to stamp his authority. The senator asked the Chief Justice to lead the judiciary as he should and asked him to act first then let the results be seen by the public.
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