JSC gets new member after magistrate’s pick sworn-in
Chief Magistrate Everlyne Olwande was yesterday sworn-in to represent Kenya Magistrates and Judges Association at the Judicial Service Commission (JSC).
Olwande now replaces Emily Ominde at the powerful 11-member Commission which is set to embark on a journey of recruiting a new Chief Justice.
“You come to us at a time that is critical, especially now that we have embarked on the recruitment of Chief Justice.
Be strong and courageous, don’t be led by self-interest or interest of others who may seek to influence you,” Attorney General Kihara Kariuki told her yesterday at the swearing-in ceremony.
Kihara advised her to let her tenure be distinguished with integrity also noted that the executive will continue to work very closely with the Judiciary as an arm of the government.
Acting Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu on her part noted that Olwande has joined the commission at a time that is not more special or more difficult.
“The work of the commission is sacred work at all times. In my mind there is not a time that we have been called upon to be less judicious in discharge of our duties,” she noted.
“I pray that you don’t find roadblocks while discharging your duties, you will soon realise you have joined a team that is rigid and that works as a team,” she added.
Olwande, who is the Limuru Senior Principal Magistrate, was elected by KMJA last December.
Vice President KMJA
She beat Shanzu-based Senior Principal Magistrate Florence Macharia, Kiambu Principal Magistrate Stella Atambo and senior Principal Magistrate Dolphina Alego.
Olwande who also holds the office of Vice-President at KMJA was little known until she was arrested for breaking Covid-19 rules in April last year.
She was booked at Embakasi Police Station on April 12 for contravening curfew orders but she was not charged in court.
The Magistrate in her acceptance speech said she had faced so many hurdles, the traps and the harassment during her campaign trail.
“My supporters were being called and threatened but God stood by us. We were the brokest team in the campaign and were having a very hard time but we sacrificed our time, our resources without any pay and made it,” she said.
A complaint against the magistrate was made to the office of ombudsman by Edward Onyancha on May 21 accusing her of contravening Covid-19 rules.
Onyancha in the letter explained that the magistrate was arrested together with some friends at 3.45am in Syokimau along Mombasa road while partying.
“It is expected that all citizens obey the said regulations and it was wrong for you as a judicial officer with a mandate to adjudicate matters concerning disobedience of rule of law to circumvent the course of justice,” he had said in the letter.