► Judge Riaga Omolo of Kenya; ethical misfit Print E-mail
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Judge Riaga Omolo of Kenya; ethical misfit

 
Judge Riaga Omolo was Kenya’s most senior judge until the Vetting of Judges and Magistrates Board ordered his removal from the bench.
 
Board chairman Sharad Rao said they found that Judge Omolo was guilty of inconsistency in his judgments involving political cases; failed to show impartiality during the government of former president Daniel arap Moi, and was guilty of authoritarianism on the bench.
 
One case involved an election petition filed by Kenneth Matiba against Moi after Kenya’s first multi-party election of 1992. Judge Omolo castigated Matiba who was paralyzed and was unable to sign the election papers.
 
The Board said, “In all of highly publicized political matters his decisions appeared to lean in favor of authoritarian repression rather open up pathways for democratic expression.”
The members of the Board felt that Judge Omolo had not shown sufficient capacity for introspection and the ability to analyze matters in an objective matter.
In fact, Judge Omolo admitted on his own admission that he had failed Kenyans and the victims of the Nyaho House torture chambers, but he showed inadequate appreciation of how deeply and negatively the actual judgments he delivered had impacted on public confidence in the fairness of the Judiciary.
Had Judge Omolo been sitting on the bench in Texas, Florida or California he likely would have received a complimentary reprimand as punishment rather then being tossed off the bench.
 

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