64-year-old Court of Appeal judge, David Maraga who is a staunch Seventh Day Adventist is the new nominated Kenyan Chief Justice. David Maraga took many by surprise by telling the Judicial Service Commission panel that he would not hear cases on Saturdays if appointed Chief Justice.
The judge was appointed to the High Court in October 2003 and elevated to the Court of Appeal in 2012. He contested for the position of Court of Appeal President against incumbent Paul Kihara but lost by a single vote.
Maraga holds an LL.B and an LL.M from the University of Nairobi. After receiving his law degree from the UoN in 1977, and a post-graduate diploma from the Kenya School of Law the following year, Maraga opened law firm in Nakuru where he practised until appointed to the High Court.
“It would be very difficult for me to sit on a Saturday to hear a case,” Maraga said in reply to a commission member’s query about a hypothetical situation, local media reported. “I would rather talk with my colleagues in the court to accommodate me and exempt me from sitting if the hearing extends to a Saturday.”
“According to the judge, only a matter of life and death can make him miss church on Saturday — for instance, an accident happening on his way to church in which case he would stop to help the victims,”
The commission’s recommendations are forwarded to the president who, after endorsing them, sends them to the parliament for final approval.