Here are the Supreme Court Judges set to hear the Presidential Petition

Here are the Supreme Court Judges set to hear the Presidential Petition

Supreme Court of Kenya judges. Photo/Courtesy

Following the announcement by the Azimio La Umoja Coalition Presidential candidate Raila Odinga that he would pursue all legal and Constitutional means, it is expected that he will be heading to the Supreme Court to challenge the 2022 presidential results.

Mr Odinga, during a press address on Tuesday, rejected the results which showed that the UDA Party candidate William Ruto was declared the winner, terming them as null and void. His running mate Martha Karua also echoed his words.

He accused the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Chairman Wafula Chebukati of violating the Constitution and electoral laws in his decision to declare Ruto as President-elect.

The petition, as stipulated by the Supreme Court, should be filed within seven days from the declaration of the results by IEBC.

The petition will then be determined 14 days from the day it was filed.

Here are the seven Supreme Court judges who will be hearing the case led by Chief Justice Martha Koome, Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu, Justice William Ouko, Justice Mohammed Ibrahim, Justice (Dr.) Smokin Wanjala, Lady Justice Njoki Ndungu and  Justice Isaac Lenaola. 

1. Chief Justice Lady Martha Koome

Sitting at the helm of the Judiciary and the Supreme Court, she acts as the link between the Judiciary and the other arms of Government.

Justice Koome pursued her law degree at the University of Nairobi where she graduated in 1986 before proceeding to the Kenya School of Law the following year.

She set up her private legal practice in 1988, then later joined the Judiciary in 2003 and practised across various stations all over the country, during which time she also served as a council member of the Law Society of Kenya (LSK).

She proceeded to the University of London where she completed her Master’s degree (LL.M) in Public International Law in 2010.

In 2011, she was elevated to the Court of Appeal and, in September that same year, she was elected the Chairperson of the Kenya Magistrates and Judges Association.

Lady Justice Koome has, throughout her over three-decade career, distinguished herself as a champion for the rights of women and the welfare of children.

She at one time served as the Chairperson of the National Council on the Administration of Justice special task force on children matters where she helped steer the review of the Children’s Act.

These, among her other efforts on the welfare of children, last year earned her a nod as the runner-up for the 2020 UN in Kenya Person of the Year.

2. Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mbete Mwilu

Justice Philomena Mwilu boasts a 33-year-long career in the Kenya Judiciary.

She graduated from the University of Nairobi with a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) and was admitted as an advocate of the High Court of Kenya in 1984 before heading to Mutunga & Company Advocates where she practised law.

In 1991 she proceeded to work at Jubilee Insurance Company Ltd as a senior legal manager and later in 1999 worked as a Board secretary at the Electricity Regulatory board.

Lady Justice Mwilu then moved to serve in the Commercial Division of the High Court in Nairobi and later the High Court in Eldoret in 2007. 

She was later transferred to Nairobi where she served in the Criminal Division and subsequently headed the Environment and Land Division of the High Court. 

She was elevated to the court of appeal in November 2012 where she served as a Judge of Appeal until her appointment as the Deputy Chief Justice in 2016.

Justice Mwilu is known for passionately fighting for the girl child and has actively mentored many girls and boys in secondary schools across the Republic of Kenya by visiting their schools and giving much-needed guidance. 

She has even been awarded the Moran of the Golden Heart by President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2017.

3. Justice William Ouko

He serves as the President of Court of Appeal since his appointment to office in 2018.

Justice Ouko has a 34-year experience in the legal profession having served in different capacities.

He obtained a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Nairobi in 1986, and a post-graduate Diploma in Law from the Kenya School of Law in 1987 before he was admitted to the Roll of Advocates the same year.

Ouko then kicked off his career as an advocate at Mbogholi Msagha and Company Advocates (1987) the later heading to practice professionally at District Magistrate II till 1989.

He was later promoted to serve as the Chief Court Administrator of the Judiciary in 1997.

Subsequently, Justice Ouko was promoted to become the Registrar of the High Court and Accounting Officer for the Judiciary in 2002. During this period, he served as Secretary to the Judicial Service Commission and Secretary to the National Council for Law Reporting (NCLR).

In 2003 he was appointed as a Joint Secretary in the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the Goldenberg Affair, while still serving as a Registrar in the High Court.

He was later appointed as a Court of Appeal Judge, in 2012 after which he pursued and graduated with a Master of Arts in Criminology & Criminal Justice from Egerton University in 2016.

In 2018 he was elected by his colleagues as the President of the Court of Appeal where he served until June 11, 2021.

Justice Ouko is engaged in mentorship engagements for youth in schools and continues to take part in fundraising to assist needy children and mentorship programs.

He holds an award of the National Honour of the Elder of the Order of the Burning Spear (EBS) as awarded by President Kenyatta in 2019.

4. Justice Mohammed Ibrahim

Justice Mohammed serves as a judge of the inaugural Supreme Court of Kenya since 2011. 

He obtained his Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Nairobi and was admitted to the Roll of Advocates on January 11, 1983. 

He then practised law at Messrs Waruhiu & Muite Advocates, where he was admitted as a partner in 1985. 

In 1994, he established Mohammed Ibrahim & Associates, which subsequently expanded to become Ibrahim & Isaack Advocates in 1997. 

He has served as a council member of the Law Society of Kenya and a board member of a non-governmental organisation, Legal Education and Aid Programme (LEAD).

Justice Ibrahim was actively involved in civil rights advocacy at the advent of the pro-democracy movement in Kenya and was detained without trial in 1990. 

5. Justice (Dr.) Smokin Wanjala

He is a judge of the Supreme Court of Kenya after being appointed in 2011.

Justice Wanjala is a holder of a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B, Hons.) from the University of Nairobi, a Post Graduate Diploma in Law from the Kenya School of Law, a Master of Laws (LL.M) from Columbia University, New York, and a Doctorate in Law (PhD) from the University of Ghent, Belgium.

Justice Wanjala served as a Law Lecturer and later, Senior Lecturer at the University of Nairobi for 19 years from 1986.

He was later appointed Assistant Director of the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC) in October 2004, where he served until 2009.

He is known for having overseen the compilation and writing of what has become popularly known as the Ndung’u Report. It was a report on an Illegal and Irregular allocation of public land.  

He holds a Chief of the Order of the Burning Spear (CBS) Presidential award which he received in 2012.

6. Lady Justice Njoki Ndungu

She serves as a Judge of the Supreme Court of Kenya.

Justive Ndun'gu holds both a Masters in Law degree (LL.M) in Human Rights and Civil Liberties. She also holds a diploma in Women’s Rights. 

She is the architect of the Sexual Offences Act 2006 and of the amendments to the Employment Act 2007 providing for paid maternity and paternity leave as well as to the Political Parties Act 2007 on affirmative action measures for women in political participation.

In 2006, Justice Ndung'u was awarded the UN Person of the Year in Kenya and the International Commission of Jurists – Jurist of the Year Award. 

She has received Presidential Commendation of the rank of the Elder of the Burning Spear (EBS) in 2006 and later awarded the rank of Chief of the Burning Spear (CBS).

7. Justice Isaac Lenaola