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CJ Koome Promises Security For Judges, Judicial Officers After Kivuti Killing

Chief Justice Martha Koome has vowed to push for security reforms in the Judiciary to ensure the safety of court premises, especially to protect judges, judicial officers and staff in the course of their duties.

CJ Koome was speaking on Tuesday during a ceremony held at Makadara Law Courts in honour of Magistrate Monica Kivuti who died following injuries sustained after she was shot by a senior police officer in the line of work on Wednesday last week.

She said that the tragedy had exposed the current state of security at the Judiciary, assuring that under her leadership such incidents will never reoccur.

“I want to assure you that we will do all in our powers to ensure that this does not happen again,” stated the CJ.

While terming Magistrate Kivuti’s shooting as “an attack on judicial independence and the rule of law,” CJ Koome said she would engage with the two other arms of government so that adequate resources to boost security within the justice corridors.

She referred to Kivuti’s death as one of the most difficult moments in the history of Kenya’s justice system.

“It will take time to recover, to undo the damage, and to heal the wounds and pain caused by this heinous act. But I am sure that our resilience will enable us to overcome this cowardly attack and emerge even stronger,” CJ Koome said.

“Indeed, the fact that she was attacked while sitting and serving Kenyans in a tent and over lunch hour is a testament to her dedication and calling to serve the public,” added Koome.

The CJ pointed out that she had already engaged the Interior ministry and the Office of the Inspector General of Police to deploy additional officers to reinforce the Judiciary Police Unit and reorganize it under the leadership of a senior commanding officer with a functional Secretariat.

At the same time, Koome implored the public to demand that the Judiciary finds centrality in the nation’s allocation of resources.

“We must, as a nation, find the conscience to treat the Judiciary as a co-equal arm of government with the same resources extended to the Executive and Parliament. We cannot enforce governance without the Judiciary. We cannot have a secure country without a secure Judiciary,” urged CJ Koome.

The CJ was accompanied by her deputy Philomena Mwilu, JSC Commissioner Everlyne Olwande, LSK President Faith Odhiambo, Kenya Magistrates Judges Association (KMLA) President Justice Stephen Radido, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Renson Ingonga, and Chief Registrar of the Judiciary Winfridah Mokaya among others.

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