LSK PROTESTS JUBILEE ATTACK ON JUDGE.

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Justice George Odunga who declined to stop Parliament from debating on elections laws on Thursday December 22,2016.

BY NT REPORTER.
The Law Society of Kenya has condemned threats by Jubilee Member of Parliament against High Court Judicial Review Presiding Judge George Odunga.

Legislators led by National Assembly majority leader Aden Duale had said they would file a motion on Odunga’s conduct.

They threatened to do so as the judge prepared to rule on Cord’s application to stop Parliament from debating the proposed amendments to the election laws.

Duale issued a statement on their behalf to the press after passing election laws that had been disputed by their counterparts in the opposition.

LSK president Isaac Okero said the attack was unwarranted, a threat on the independence of the judiciary and integrity of the judge, and an abuse of parliamentary privilege.

“It is conduct completely untenable in any civilized democracy,” he said in a statement.

Okero noted Odunga holds an important constitutional office as a judge and a member of the judiciary and that his independence is protected by article 160 (1) of the constitution.

“His exercise of judicial authority is undertaken on behalf of the people of the republic and therefore cannot, and should not, be subjected to any impediment of any nature,” he said.

He added that the society was against any attempt to threaten or intimidate the judge or any member of the judiciary

Cord suffered a major setback after high court judge George Odunga declined to stop Parliament from debating on elections laws.

Judge Odunga however said that the petitioners can later move to court and seek orders on the said laws.

Odunga while issuing the ruling said that he does not see what will bar the court from reversing the decision of the National Assembly if the said election Act is illegal and contravenes the constitution.

“I do not find any compelling reason why parliament ought to be stopped from proceeding with the debate, thereafter depending on what it decides this court will be at liberty to scrutinize the process to see whether it did comply with the law,” judge Odunga ruled.

In the case CORD is alleging that the sittings are illegal and not according with the standing orders of the National Assembly.

The ruling was read an hour after the National Assembly approved the amendment which provides for a manual back-up system for the voting, transmission and tallying of election results which was strongly opposed by the Opposition.

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