Fred Ngatia has faulted the nomination process by the Judicial Service Commission which recommended Justice Martha Koome to be Kenya’s next Chief Justice.
Ngatia who represented President Uhuru Kenyatta in the 2017 presidential election petition, dismissed the nomination saying that four Mount Kenya commissioners of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) reduced his scores after receiving calls from unamed powerful individuals.
“Four commissioners from Mt Kenya reduced my scores yesterday (Monday) afternoon after they were called by powerful people. Without that intervention, I was far ahead of all the other candidates,” Ngatia told the Business Daily.
The change of events was not only unexpected to Ngatia, but also to a number of Kenyans who thought his odds were higher than those of the other candidates since he had successfully represented Uhuru in an election petition.
However, Olive Mugenda, who chaired the JSC interviews said that they were not influenced in any manner to manipulate the results.
“Our duty was to select the best candidate and that’s what we have done,” she said.
During his interview, Ngatia said that he is a suitable candidate to take over from David Maraga because of his vast experience in law practice, having presented the country in a case of boundary dispute between Kenya and Sudan.
“I have been to almost all courts in the country. I do believe that I have a practitioner’s eyes to be able to see the weakness of the systems,” Fred Ngatia told the JSC in his interview.
Martha Koome clinched the nomination after she emerged the winner among 10 candidates that were shortlisted for the interviews.
Her nomination is a historical one as she will become the first female Chief Justice of the republic of Kenya.