Monday, July 1, 2013

Duale to shed light on CJ Senegal trip

Majority leader Aden Duale will issue statement in the House to explain why Chief Justice Willy Mutunga travelled to Senegal to meet US President Barack Obama. Photo/FILE

Majority leader Aden Duale will issue statement in the House to explain why Chief Justice Willy Mutunga travelled to Senegal to meet US President Barack Obama. Photo/FILE  Nation Media Group

By JOHN NGIRACHU [email protected]

The government will on Tuesday explain why Chief Justice Willy Mutunga travelled to Senegal to meet US President Barack Obama.

National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale will issue the statement in Parliament.

The request for the statement was made last week by TNA nominated MP Johnson Sakaja.

Mr Sakaja asked Mr Duale to explain the circumstances under which the CJ travelled to Senegal last week to meet President Obama, who is on a three-state tour of Africa.

The TNA chairman also sought to know whether the meeting would have any bearing on the cases President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto are facing at the International Criminal Court.

Mr Sakaja suggested that the timing of the meeting was suspect, given that the hearings of the cases are scheduled for later this year.

He also wanted to know who footed the cost of the flight and accommodation and whether any State Officers accompanied him.

Mr Sakaja also asked whether Dr Mutunga met President Obama in his individual capacity or as a State Officer. “Bearing in mind the judicial process going on at the ICC, we would like to know more about the trip,” he said.

In a statement from the Judiciary on the CJ’s trip last week, it was reported that the invitation to the meeting was through the US Embassy in Nairobi.

And when he went to open the Court of Appeal in Kisumu yesterday, the CJ spoke about the meeting in Dakar, Senegal’s capital, which he said was attended by chief justices from Senegal, Malawi, Benin, Zambia, Cote d’Ivoire, Botswana, Niger and Gabon as well as the senior-most judges from Ghana and Uganda.

Dr Mutunga said they were invited to discuss the role of judiciaries in promoting democracy on the continent.

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