Raphael Tuju onslaught on Justice Odunga threat to rule of law

raphael tuju

Jubilee Secretary General Raphael Tuju. /Courtesy

Justice George Odunga is once again in the eye of a partisan political storm after the Jubilee Party through its erratic Secretary General Raphael Tuju wrote to the Chief Justice David Maraga to bar the judge from hearing all election related cases arising from next week’s August 8 polls.

Through Tuju, the party wants Mr Odunga to be replaced from being the “judge on schedule” during the period in which election petition cases will be filed at the high court.

Tuju has taken to accusing Justice Odunga of being related to Siaya Senator James Orengo as the only reason why the judge should recuse himself in various cases. It doesn’t matter that the Jubilee Secretary General never tables any evidence as to Odunga’s conduct that provides a ground to have the judge ousted.

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As pathetic as the demand is, Tuju’s only reason is that Orengo’s wife is related to some married in the Odunga family, who has a son named James Orengo Junior.

Even more egregious, the judge is required to step aside in cases where the decisions were made by a whole bench, sometimes comprising up to five judges.

Justice Odunga heads the High Court’s Constitutional Division and the Judicial Review Division. James Orengo, a constitutional lawyer, by default, nearly always represents clients seeking constitutional interpretation of certain laws.

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In this working arrangement, there is no way the two would not meet in court, Odunga being a judge and Orengo being an advocate. It is unavoidable professional relationship.

Be that as it may, there equally so little, in fact, absolutely nothing, that both Orengo and Odunga can do to purge relationships in their families, if such relationships indeed exists. It appears that for Tuju to be satisfied, the little boy named after Orengo should be named after Mahatma Gandhi or Dalai Lama or even Tuju himself. Pathological nonsense.

A review of cases the judge has handled surprisingly offers a more balanced outcomes, with either side winning and losing cases, according to evidence adduced in court and the provisions of the law. Yet, despite this, Jubilee is adamant that Justice Odunga must exit the High Court.

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This attack on judges, particularly Justice Odunga weaken the rule of law and all Kenyan of goodwill should scoff at.

Raphael Tuju is merely engaging in this pig fight to mud-sling Justice Odunga and create a narrative that he is pro-opposition, a disgusting maneuver by a person of his caliber and authority.

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Written by Kahawa Tungu


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