The judiciary has been hit by a shortage of prosecutors hence stalling the process of reforms as envisioned by the new constitution and the new management under Chief justice Dr. Willy Mutunga.
The shortage has been characterized by the rapid reforms initiated by the judiciary without the involvement of other departments that are core in the judicial processes of the country, notably the Office of The Director of Public Prosecutor (DPP) and The Kenya Police.
Talking to TKA’S on condition of anonymity, one judicial officer noted that the problem has been one of the major reasons for the recent backlog of cases in courts.
“The Judiciary is reforming at an alarming rate, yet they have left behind the major components of the process… When we hired new magistrates and expanded courts, we did that without the involvement of the DPP’s office and the Kenya Police. The two institutions did not recruit officers to work with the new structures hence the shortage”.
In Kibera Law Courts for example, two courts have not been in session for close to a month now while most of the courts share a prosecutor. This has made things hard for cases to be concluded on time as most a time, the prosecutors keep postponing their cases to attend to cases in another court.
The situation is so dire that a group of lawyers are planning to petition the Chief Justice Dr. Willy Mutunga and the DPP Keriako Tobiko to speed up the process of hiring new prosecutors as well as work on the integration plan for the current prosecutors whose majority are service men and women under the Kenya Police.
The last two weeks have been worst hit with cases up for mention at Kibera Law Courts being heard late in the afternoon while hearings get postponed to as late as June 2013.
Back to you Dr. Mutunga, as you work towards your expansion plan and reforms, kindly involve the other stakeholders in the process lest we end up having the judiciary being much more than a time wasting process for Kenyans.