Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu has asserted that Court orders must be respected by all persons and institutions, including all state and public officers.
“The formulation and enactment of laws is the province of Parliament and no person or agency, or other governmental organ may impede the legislature’s autonomous discharge of that role,” Mwilu said during the Post-election Seminar for MPs currently ongoing in Mombasa.
She said the courts respect the doctrine of separation of powers and the autonomy of Parliament and the same should be exercised by individuals and institutions.
CJ David Maraga and Jerry Hartz, the Director of Government Relations and Communications, National Democratic Institute, USA also graced the occasion.
The theme of the conference is “Sharing our Experiences to Enhance Good Governance and Continually Safeguard the Welfare of the Nation.”
Mwilu said: “That theme encompasses well our primary responsibility: the public interest. The doctrine of rule of law essentially means that ‘people ought to be governed by law.”
While quoting Article 1 (3) of the Constitution, the DCJ noted that the respect for the doctrine of separation of powers is necessary for the rule of law to prevail in a democratic society.
She said respect for the rule of law is what forms the foundation a democracy.
Her remarks came when country is still reeling from numerous instances where court orders have been disregarded by the government and state organs.
This included failure by Interior CS Fred Matiang’i and Director of Immigration Gordon Kihalangwa to present in court or release lawyer Miguna Miguna.
The government instead deported him to Canada on claims that he wasn’t a Kenyan citizen.
Other examples where court orders have been disregarded are the failure by government to reinstate the passports and security of seven NASA leaders.
Mwilu said Chief Justice David Maraga, herself and the entire judiciary are committed to building a strong judicial system that is transformative.