Kenyan High Court Judge Mumbi Ngugi is set to be honoured with the Global Jurist of the Year Award by Northwestern Pritzker School of Law’s Center for International Human Rights (CIHR).
Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law is one of the professional graduate schools of Northwestern University, located in Chicago, Illinois.
Justice Ngugi, who serves in the Anti-corruption and Economic Crimes Division of the High Court, will be the sixth recipient of the award.
She will receive the award during a webinar at noon, Tuesday, February 16, 2021.
The Global Jurist of the Year Award is designed to honour a sitting judge, whether in an international or national court, who has demonstrated in his or her career courage in the face of adversity to uphold and defend fundamental human rights or the principles of international criminal justice. Jurists from all nations and tribunals are eligible for consideration.
Commenting on why Justice Ngugi was chosen to be the recipient of the prestigious award, Thomas F. Geraghty, interim director of CIHR, said: “It is important that we bring to our University community distinguished practitioners and scholars who not only speak and write but those who courageously work to implement human rights on the front lines.”
“Without them, little progress would be made in implementing human rights protections. She is a role model for our faculty and for students who aspire to be future Justice Ngugis.”
Justice Ngugi is a long-time advocate of human rights in Kenya. She has been involved in advocacy work for the rights of women, children and persons with albinism.
In July 2019, she delivered a landmark ruling in Kenya that has seen governors charged with graft blocked from accessing their offices pending hearing and determination of their cases.
The judge, who is considered one of the front runners in the race to succeed retired Chief Justice David Maraga, holds a bachelor of laws degree (LLB) from the University of Nairobi and a master of laws (LLM) in commercial and corporate law from the London School of Economics, University of London.
Past recipients of the CIHR’s Global Jurist Award include Judge Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi, President of the International Criminal Court and a national of Argentina; Justice Rosalie Silberman Abella of the Supreme Court of Canada; the Honorable Gloria Patricia Porras Escobar, president of the Guatemalan Constitutional Court; and Justice Shireen Avis Fisher, president of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. Acting Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke of South Africa’s Constitutional Court received the award in 2013 as the first recipient of the Global Jurist Award.