The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has nominated Court of Appeal Judge William Ouko for the position of Supreme Court Judge.
Addressing members of the press at the Supreme Court on Wednesday, JSC vice-chairperson Olive Mugenda said the commission unanimously settled on Ouko, 58, from seven candidates interviewed for the position this week.
“We congratulate Justice Willaim Ouko, and we wish him well. To the other [Supreme Court Judge] candidates, the Commission has had the privilege to know you better and appreciate your hard work in the capacities in which you are serving the nation,” said Mugenda.
The interviews were held between Monday and Wednesday.
Ouko’s name will be forwarded to President Uhuru Kenyatta for appointment.
The President is also required to submit the name to Parliament for vetting.
Ouko, who has been the President of the Appellate Court since 2018, will replace Justice Jackton Ojwang who retired in February last year.
Other candidates interviewed for the position of Supreme Court Judge are Justice Said Juma Chitembwe, Justice Marete Njagi, Justice Matthews Nduma, lawyer Alice Yano, Justice Sergon Joseph Kiplagat and Dr. Nyaberi Lumumba.
Ouko, who boasts of 34 years of experience in the legal profession, was among 10 candidates shortlisted for the position of Chief Justice in interviews that were conducted between April 12 – 23, 2021.
He lost to Justice Martha Koome, also from the Court of Appeal.
While being interviewed on Wednesday morning for the position of Supreme Court Judge, Ouko noted that funding at the Judiciary was to blame for delayed justice dispensation in Kenya.
Justice Ouko said the Judiciary should be among the recipients of adequate budgetary allocation in each financial year.
He told JSC commissioners that if appointed to the Apex court he would lobby for cases to be heard in shorter durations.