Top African Judges, Lawyers to monitor presidential petition

Top African Judges, Lawyers to monitor presidential petition

The African Judges and Jurists Forum (AJJF) in conjunction with the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) has now sent a mission in Kenya, to observe the proceedings of the August 8 Presidential petition filed by National Super Alliance (NASA) at the Supreme Court.

The mission, which constitutes of eminent jurists, will be headed by the immediate Former Chief Justice of the Zambia, Ernest Sakala, is expected to monitor the petition in court in relation to the observance of African human rights standards.

Other members of the delegation are Retired Justice Moses Chinhengo of Zimbabwe, Justice Key Oagile Dingake from Botswana, human rights lawyers Martin Masiga from Uganda and Brian Penduka from Zimbabwe.

“The trial observation mission will look generally at matters related to the independence of the judiciary and the role of the Supreme Court in the adjudication of the presidential electoral dispute following the 2017 elections. The mission will be more than just a trial (petition) observation but will look at broader socio-political environment in the run up to the petition,” read a statement from ICJ.

The observers are then expected to craft a comprehensive report on the findings and the nature of the ruling, at the end of trial observations.

This, ICJ says, will play a big role in developing a more “professional, impartial and accountable judiciary; a more independent legal profession; and  a better adherence to the rule of law in Africa.

On Wednesday, August 16, opposition leader, Raila Odinga, defied his campaign sentiments of not going to court this time round by saying that the National Super Alliance (NASA) will be moving to the Supreme Court to contest the presidential election results.

The former Prime Minister, argues that “NASA wants to show the world what transpired in the August 8 General Election”, which he termed the leadership declared winners by IEBC as “computer generated”.

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Story By Majanga Michael
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