Chief Justice David Maraga’s five-year reign at the helm of the Judiciary has officially come to an end.
On Monday, Maraga handed over instruments of power to Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu, who will serve until a new office bearer is appointed.
Maraga is proceeding on retirement having attained 70 years, the mandatory retirement age for judges in Kenya.
During a special ceremony held at the Supreme Court buildings on Monday, Maraga handed over the institutional flag to Mwilu, signifying the transfer of authority to the acting Chief Justice.
“As I have already said the Judiciary and our judges are the custodian of the Constitution and we cannot tire to continue reminding ourselves of that responsibility. It is now my pleasure to hand over the Constitution to my deputy,” said Maraga.
Maraga served as the country’s 14th Chief Justice and the second under the 2010 Constitution after assuming office in 2016 following the early retirement of his predecessor Willy Mutunga.
"We must continue to invest in our judiciary, bearing in mind political stability in this country can only be guaranteed if rule of law reigns. Without rule of law in this country, we will all be losers. I assure the entire nation that I leave behind a strong Judiciary with dedicated and professional judges. I urge citizens to support judges and magistrates," the retired CJ added.
Mwilu will serve as the acting Chief Justice for a period not exceeding six months pending the appointment of a new Chief Justice in line with section 5 of the Judicial Service Act.
Maraga whose term was marked by judiciary budgetary cuts as well as public fights between the judiciary with the executive will be remembered for the historic nullification of the results of the 2017 presidential election over illegalities and irregularities.