Lawyer Ahmednasir Abdullahi has opened a new war front with Judiciary Registrar Gladys Shollei, barely a day after a truce was reached with the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), by insisting the probe against her is not over.
Speaking during a Law Society of Kenya seminar, Abdullahi says the JSC will still push Shollei to respond to allegations levelled against her.
“We have read and heard many rumours in the media in regard to the consent order or the suit has been withdrawn with some saying that the JSC has chickened out but I assure you to watch this space… we are going forward with the case,” says Abdullahi.
He further explained that some JSC members had second thoughts on the decision to suspend Shollei but the majority vote was still in support of sending her on compulsory leave.
“On the Monday after our weekend retreat, the Chief Justice called the JSC members for a meeting to get a brief on the decision reached by the commission on the matter and there was a proposal to amend the decision but it was turned down after a vote where those for the suspension won,” said Abdullahi.
He explained that Shollei still needs to explain to the JSC the expenditure of the judiciary as the chief accounting officer.
“When I joined the judiciary there was only Sh3 billion allocated to it and we petitioned government to increase it progressively to the Sh16 billion it is today; but Kenya being what it is the Judiciary being a very Kenyan institution it is likely that anyone who wants to steal money will easily put their hands in the till.”
Abdullahi said that in an era where they are working hard to reform the Judiciary it is wrong to let the alleged misconduct by Shollei pass.
“We have stood against the graft in the Judiciary by taking focus on the judges and we had the famous radical surgery and the vetting and having won that war we cannot lose the war to the bureaucrats so that they can do as they please,” he added.
Abdullahi elaborated on the agreement reached between the JSC and Shollei, terming it as “temporary ceasefire.”
“We cannot settle such fundamental issues as those raised in the suit and the consent was just procedural from our perspective and we have not conceded to anything substantial. It was just a quick solution to the ceasefire between the two parties,” he said.
He further promised that they remain relentless in seeking justice and soon a final decision would be reached in regard to the matter.
“I am sure on Monday while you watch the 1 o’clock news you will hear news on the next step taken by the JSC but I assure you that we will not allow anybody to play with the judiciary budget and though there are big forces trying to deter us but we are up for the challenge,” he added.
Speaking on the JSC summons before Parliament Abdullahi said that they will only appear before Parliament if they also summon President Uhuru Kenyatta.
In a quick rejoinder, Shollei’s lawyer Donald Kipkorir fired a letter to Chief Justice Willy Mutunga saying they will sue Abdullahi for libel and want him removed from the JSC as a commissioner.
In his letter, Kipkorir said that Shollei does not fear any probe and the actions by the commissioner are unlawful, irregular and out rightly immoral.
“As a JSC member, Ahmednasir cannot lead a loose-cannon war against Ms Shollei. He is the one who was quoted in the Saturday Nation of August 17 saying that Ms Shollei was going to be suspended even before JSC had met!!!” wrote Kipkorir.
Shollei through her lawyer had earlier on Friday agreed to withdraw her petition which was seeking to block JSC from sending her on compulsory leave.