Judges and Magistrates Vetting Board came into existence in 2011 after the enactment of the Vetting of Judges and Magistrates Act, which establishes the Board and its life since then begs many questions on its efficacy, challenges and usefulness.
The Board’s main objective is to vet the suitability of all the Judges and Magistrates who were in office on the effective date of the new constitution of Kenya to continue to serve in accordance with the values and principles set out in Article 10 and 159 of the constitution.
Between 2012 and 2013 the Judges and Magistrates Vetting Board vetted a total of 125 judicial officers comprising 53 judges and 72 magistrates. The Board in its determinations found 13 judges and 6 magistrates unsuitable to continue serving in their respective offices.
The Supreme Court the Court of Appeal and the High Court all have been embroiled in the most unpleasant of cases involving their colleagues on the bench.
Today’s reality is that the fate of seven Court of Appeal Judges, High Court Judges and Magistrates is hanging unfairly in the legal wrangles. .
It is a little surprising that the Supreme Court, the highest Court in the Country has given two contradictory decisions which have effectively rang the knell bell for the Vetting Board.