CONSTITUTIONAL LAW

Kenya court says no more 'jobs for pals', sets aside 130 appointments

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has been dealt another blow by the country’s courts, this time by three members of the high court who found a raft of appointments he made in June 2018 was unconstitutional. As the media in Kenya have pointed out, the list of more than 100 appointments made at that time of people to head parastatal organisations or serve on those boards, was dominated by individuals who had failed to win election in the 2017 polls.

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This was a petition brought by two Kenyan organisations that support constitutionalism and open governance: the Katiba Institute and the Africa Centre for Open Governance (AfriCOG). They sued the attorney general and the public service commission, saying that more than 120 appointments to a variety of state corporations made by President Uhuru Kenyatta and members of his cabinet, were unconstitutional.

Sacking of 14 judges by South Sudan President unconstitutional: East African Court of Justice

When a government removes one judge from office in a way that flouts the constitution and judicial independence it would be bad enough. But a case brought to the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) by Justice Malek Mathiang Malek against South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir for dismissing him, was just the tip of the iceberg. In fact, Justice Malek was one of more than a dozen judges dismissed by the government in 2017. But Justice Malek, who has had more than 20 years’ experience on the bench, decided he was not simply going to accept the situation.

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In its latest decision, the East African Court of Justice has come out strongly against unconstitutional government action to dismiss members of the judiciary. The case involved a senior member of the judicial bench in South Sudan, appeal court judge Malek Mathiang Malek, who challenged his 2017 dismissal by President Salva Kiir.

Billionaire advocate makes new law - on tax amnesty

WITH his flashy style, enormous wealth and handy political connections, billionaire Kenyan lawyer and businessman, Kenneth Kiplagat, regularly makes headlines. Now he is also making new law. In a major case against the country’s top financial officials he has won an order setting aside attempts to charge him interest and penalties for unpaid back tax. He has won a declaration that a particular aspect of the law on tax amnesties is unconstitutional.

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