President Uhuru Kenyatta has revoked the appointment of lawyer Dorothy Jemator to the selection panel that is recruiting four Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission commissioners.
Jemator had been nominated to represent the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) in the selection panel.
In a gazette notice dated May 27, the Head of State replaced Jemator with Morris Kimuli.
Jemator’s nomination and the appointment had been opposed by a section of LSK members.
She had been nominated by a faction of the LSK governing council led by Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mercy Wambua to represent the organisation in the seven-member selection panel. She was subsequently appointed by President Kenyatta.
The High Court, however, quashed her nomination and appointment a fortnight ago following a petition filed by lawyer Alfonse Kilonzo.
In his ruling, Justice George Odunga said the organisation’s representative should be lawyer Kimuli who had been nominated by LSK President Nelson Havi.
The judge noted that the LSK president forwarded Kimuli’s name to the Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) on April 16, 2021, only for the CEO to forward Jemator’s name on April 21.
The commission, Justice Odunga said, failed to provide a legally justifiable reason on why it decided to ignore the earlier nomination in favor of the latter one adding that its role was to submit the name to the President.
“It has no business deciding who is properly nominated by the LSK. Having received the name of Kimuli before that of Jemator, it was bound by statute to submit that name to the President,” said the judge.
While opposing Jemator’s nomination, the petitioner told the court that the nominee is a State officer serving in three government offices.
Jemator, Kilonzo said, serves as a judicial officer, having been appointed as a member of the Energy and Petroleum Tribunal on March 3, 2020 for a period of three years.
She also serves at the HIV and AIDS tribunal, having been appointed as a member on May 23, 2019 for a period of three years.
According to the petitioner, Jemator is also a member of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Steering Committee as a technical expert having been appointed on January 3, 2020 by the Head of the Public Service.