Pettiness, personal vendetta: 3 embarrassing statements in Dr. Willy Mutunga’s tough letter to Uhuru

Willy Mutunga

In the wake of mounting pressure on President Uhuru Kenyatta to resign, Kenya’s 13th Chief Justice Dr Willy Mutunga has written a strongly-worded letter to President Uhuru Kenyatta in which he told the latter to resign.

In the terse letter, the former CJ dressed down the head of state over recent Judiciary appointments and for blatantly violating the constitution.

A tough-talking, Dr Mutunga condemned actions of the president which he held that are a clear violation of the Constitution, schooling Mr President on the meaning of the oath of office he took.

“I have elected to speak elaborately and strongly on this issue because when apparently innocuous and blithe breaches to the Constitution begin to occur, especially from the highest office in the land, they signal a danagerous dalliance with impunity.

“If any public officer does not like the powers the Constitution donates to them, or find the exercising of those powers annoyingly inconvenient, they have no business continuing to occupy those offices,” Dr. Mutunga wrote.

File image of President Uhuru Kenyatta
File image of President Uhuru Kenyatta

Dr Mutunga added that the constitution outlines a detailed hiring process for judges “intended precisely to be an antidote to this kind of whimsical and capricious presidential conduct”.

“Most disturbing is the president’s decision to omit the names of six judges and judicial officers from the list. Strikingly, the presidential ‘list of hate’ has even mysteriously change, meaning that the objection to the judges’ nomination is driven more by personal pique rather than principle.

“The president must resist the temptation to be garlanded in the pettiness of performing power, particularly by those who have built thriving pettiness cottage industry, completely consumed by the pursuit of personal vendetta, at the expense of the national good and Kenya’s fledging constitutional democracy,” he stated.

The former CJ told the head of state to “simply swear in the six judges” and bring the whole matter to rest.

“It is urgent that the president immediately appoints the six judges, many of whom are exceptional, because that’s what fairness, common decency, the rule of law and Constitution require. The independence and accountability of the judiciary is not negotiable.

“Mr President, you bear a burden of history to do the right thing for Kenya’s Constitution, her institutions, and the general public. Discharge this burden: Simply do the right thing,” slammed the former CJ.

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