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Justice David Maraga Biography, Family, Religion and Contacts

Justice David Maraga Biography

David Maraga whose full name is David Kenani Maraga was born in 1951, he hails from Bonyamatuta, Nyamira County. He is the 14th Chief Justice and the president of the Supreme Court of Kenya. He preceded Chief Justice Willy Mutunga.

Justice David Kenani Maraga,  was the Presiding Judge of the Court of Appeal in Kisumu. He was appointed to the High Court in October 2003 and to the Court of Appeal in 2011.

A holder of both an LL.B and an LL.M from the University of Nairobi, he also chairs the Judiciary Committee on Elections tasked with overseeing election petition hearings that may arise after the 2017 elections within the prescribed period in the constitution.

He successfully underwent the vetting board fending off accusations of tribalism and bribery seeking and was unanimously endorsed to continue to serve in 2012. An avowed Seventh Day Adventist, he startled the board proceedings when he invoked God’s name loudly and went on to swear that he had never taken a bribe in his life.

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David Maraga Education Background

Student at Kenya School of Law, post graduate diploma in Law

Graduate student at the University of Nairobi, Masters of Law

Graduate student at the university of Nairobi, Degree in Law

David Maraga Judicial Career

Justice Maraga joined the bench as a High Court Judge in October 2003 having been appointed by retired President Mwai Kibaki. He was elevated to the Court of Appeal in 2012 following an interview process by the Judicial Service Commission.

Since he was appointed to a judicial office before the 2010 Constitution of Kenya came into force, Justice Maraga went through the mandatory vetting by the Judges & Magistrates Vetting Board in 2012. The Vetting Board unanimously declared him fit to continue serving in office, though his vetting took a dramatic twist when he demanded a Bible and swore before the vetting panel that he had never taken a bribe in his judicial career and would never take bribes in future.

A year after joining the Court of Appeal, he vied for the position of President of the Court of Appeal, losing by a solitary vote to the current President, Justice Kihara Kariuki.

Justice Maraga was appointed by retired Chief Justice Willy Mutunga in May 2012 to chair the Kenya Judiciary Working Committee on Election Preparations (JWCEP) which was constituted in 2012 to ensure the Judiciary was fully prepared to deal in a timely manner, with any disputes that would arise from the March 2013 General Election.

As a result of the Committee’s work, the Judiciary is in position to deal with all election petitions within the strict statutory timelines. The Committee was thus reconstituted as the standing Judiciary Committee on Elections (JCE) in 2015, still under the Chairmanship of Justice Maraga.
In 2013, the President of Kenya named Justice Maraga as the Chair of a Tribunal which was constituted to investigate the conduct of High Court Judge Joseph Mutava after complaints emerged that the Judge had been compromised to deliver a judgment which cushioned Goldenberg suspect Kamlesh Pattni from prosecution over his involvement in the Goldenberg scandal

The Tribunal submitted a report in September 2016, recommending to the President that Justice Mutava be removed from office for improperly allocating himself the Kamlesh Pattni file when it did not fall under his docket, and proceeding to write a judgment in the case even though the Judicial Service Commission was investigating his conduct.

Before being appointed as the Chief Justice, David Maraga served as the Presiding Judge of the Court of Appeal in Kisumu. Prior to his appointment to the High Court of Kenya in 2003, he worked as lawyer in private practice for over 25 years.

JSC Picks David Maraga for Chief Justice Post

The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has picked Court of Appeal Judge David Maraga for the post of Chief Justice.

“The JSC has after lengthy deliberations recommended Hon Mr Justice David Kenani Maraga for appointment as Chief Justice and has submitted the name to His Excellency the President,” a statement from JSC read.

President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to send Justice Maraga’s name to the National Assembly for approval.

During an interview with JSC, Justice Maraga had said that if appointed CJ he would name a senior judge as the Judiciary ombudsman and revive the programme for helping the poor with court cases.

He told the JSC that he would fast-track the implementation of the Legal Aid Act to ensure that justice is accessible to all.

He also said he would hire investigators to look into complaints against judges and magistrates with a view to helping to restore public confidence in the Judiciary.

Justice Maraga said he would introduce an email address to receive public complaints on the conduct of judges, saying the use of suggestion boxes was outdated and ineffective.

His name will now be forwarded to Parliament for vetting. If lawmakers endorse him, he will be formally appointed by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Update: New Chief Justice David Maraga sworn in at State House

Source: Nation
Updated on: 19.02.2016

Justice David Maraga has been sworn in as the new Chief Justice, with President Uhuru Kenyatta asking him to forge better relations with the other arms of government.

President Kenyatta said good relations between the Judiciary, the Executive and the Legislature was important for a prosperous Kenya.

“Chief Justice, the best way to go about this is to tell each other the truth. Because if we do not tell each other the truth, we are lying to each other,” said President Kenyatta at State House.

The Head of State said Mr Maraga’s first task should be to clear the over 20,000 cases that have left people in remand, saying justice delayed was justice denied.

“Now, the biggest thing in courts is injunction. Stop this, stop that. Now, when people don’t get a contract they run to courts to get an injunction and stop works. I wish you (Judiciary) would be fast in the dispensation of Justice,” said President Kenyatta.

He said that while he did not oppose injunctions, he did not want the injunctions to stop the moving of the nation’s economy.


President Kenyatta referred to the more than 600 corruption cases that he said were dragging on in courts, which he said should be cleared.

“Bwana Chief Justice, why don’t you just concluded these cases and Kenyans will be happy,” said the President.

President Kenyatta said he was looking forward to a full Supreme Court Bench for the fast-tracking of the wheels of justice.

The new CJ said he was committed to the fight against graft.

“I will institutionalise the war against corruption to become part of the culture and strengthen the office of the Ombudsman,” said CJ Maraga.

Why David Maraga Was Appointed New Chief Justice

The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has hinted at the key aspects it considered before settling on Justice David Maraga as the next Chief Justice (CJ).

Speaking to the media, Professor Tom Ojienda, one of the Commissioners listed at least five key qualifications that made Maraga stand out among the 10 other candidates.

According to Ojienda, JSC was looking for a candidate who had outstanding jurisprudence as well as best understanding and application of the law.

The Commission was also looking for an individual who had high levels of integrity and stood out among his peers.

Additionally, Prof. Ojienda said the Commission considered the candidate who had the best transformation agenda for the Judiciary.

More than that, Justice Maraga was appointed as he was considered best placed to get judicial staff to deliver and reduce the case backlog in most of the courts.

The interview panel was also searching for a candidate who had ambassadorial traits and can appropriately work with other arms of the government while still maintain the independence of the judiciary.

Commissioner Ojienda divulged that four other applicants also passed the qualification but Justice Maraga stood out among them.

He added that the decision to appoint Maraga was arrived at unanimously after he attained the highest score allocated by all panellists.

Justice David Maraga Age

Justice David Maraga is 64 years old as of 2016

Justice David Maraga Family, Wife and Children

Details about Justice David Maraga Family, Wife and Children will be updated soon..

Judge David Maraga Religion

Judge David Maraga Refuses to Work on Sabbath

Court of appeals judge David Maraga told the Judicial Service Commission, which is responsible for nominating Supreme Court candidates to the president, that he would not enter the courtroom on Sabbath even in a presidential election dispute.

“It would be very difficult for me to sit on a Saturday to hear a case,” Maraga said in reply to a commission member’s query about a hypothetical situation, local media reported. “I would rather talk with my colleagues in the court to accommodate me and exempt me from sitting if the hearing extends to a Saturday.”

Identifying himself as a staunch Adventist, Maraga said his practice was to worship God in church on Saturdays.

“According to the judge, only a matter of life and death can make him miss church on Saturday — for instance, an accident happening on his way to church in which case he would stop to help the victims,” Kenya’s Standard newspaper reported Thursday in an article with the large headline, “I Will Not Compromise Church for Work, Says Judge.”

New Chief Justice David Maraga sworn in at State House

New Chief Justice David Maraga sworn in at State House


Justice David Maraga

Justice David Maraga

Justice David Maraga Biography


David Maraga Biography – 5 Things to Know About Justice David Maraga

Justice David Maraga will only serve one term

Justice Maraga is 64 years old. The Chief Justice position has an age limit of 70, meaning he will only serve one term and the commission will have to again interview applicants for his replacement.

His one term at the helm of the judiciary, if aproved, will match his predecessor Willy Mutunga who resigned before reaching 70 years

Justice David Maraga is going to be the 14th chief justice

Justice Maraga will be the 14th person to hold the office of the Chief Justice in post-independence Kenya. He will however be the second person to hold the office under the new constitution.

Justice David Maraga is a staunch Seventh Day Adventist

During his interview on August 31, Justice Maraga was categorical that he would not work on Saturday in line with his Sabbath Day Adventist faith. He said he cannot compromise church for work.

Justice David Maraga headed the tribunal that recommended the removal of Judge Joseph Mutava

Justice Maraga had on Wednesday presented a report to President Uhuru Kenyatta recommending for the removal of Judge Mutava for misconduct. This was after the tribunal he headed concluded its hearings and produced a full report.

Justice David Maraga describes himself as a good time manager

Justice Maraga says he used to apologise when court started late while working in Kisumu. He prides himself in being a decisive person of integrity and humility and a good time manager.He cited his record as the presiding judge of the Appellate Court in Kisumu from October 2014 to July 2016 where he made 1,250 judgments thereby clearing case backlogs.

Judge David Maraga  – Video

Judge David Maraga Interview for Chief Justice Post

Source: Daily Nation

Court of Appeal Judge David Maraga on Wednesday said he will name a senior judge as the Judiciary ombudsman and revive the programme for helping the poor with court cases if appointed the new Chief Justice.

He told the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) that he would fast-track the implementation of the Legal Aid Act to ensure that justice is accessible to all.

“Kenyans seeking justice will not be locked out due to lack of money. I will seek funding for those seeking legal assistance but have no means to get a lawyer,” he told the interviewing panel at the Supreme Court Building in Nairobi.

According to the Legal Aid Act, Kenyans who can’t afford to hire an attorney, are entitled to one at the expense of the State.

Others entitled to a State lawyer are stateless people, children, refugees or trafficked persons.

In his first year in office, Judge Maraga said he would consult with the JSC and restructure the Judiciary ombudsman to be headed by a secretariat led by a senior judge.

He would also hire investigators to look into complaints against judges and magistrates with a view to helping to restore public confidence in the Judiciary.

The current Judiciary ombudsman is Mr Kennedy Bidali, a former magistrate, who rose to the post of registrar of the High Court before his appointment.

Justice Maraga said he would introduce an email address to receive public complaints on the conduct of judges, saying the use of suggestion boxes was outdated and ineffective.


Attorney-General Githu Muigai and Prof Tom Ojienda questioned him on his understanding of contentious, contradictory or grey areas in the Constitution.

Prof Ojienda: “What are your views on lesbians, homosexuals and intersex people?”

Judge David Maraga: “These are people, who have chosen that way of life. The law will deal with them as it is. The Constitution stipulates that marriage is between a man and a woman. It will depend on the issue at that time.”

Prof Ojienda: “Should the law be amended to accommodate intersexes?”

Judge David Maraga: “These are issues the society should sympathise with. They did not choose to be born that way. Anyone can give birth to such a child. Surely, will you kill them?”

AG Muigai: “When met with gaps in law, what law should we turn to? Is it Law of Contract, Children’s Act or the Constitution? For example in a three-way custody dispute between a surrogate mother and a couple who chose to have the child but have gone their separate ways?”

Judge David Maraga: “This ordinarily would be premised on contract, but you have to consider if it is legal or against public policy? You look at the issues and see how to resolve this, but the interests of the child remain supreme.”

AG Muigai: “When relatives of a patient in a vegetative state in hospital approach the court for guidance on who should switch off the life support machine, can the doctors switch it off?”

Judge David Maraga: “Doing so would be assisted suicide, which is a crime. The Constitution regards life as sacred and even using euthanasia is illegal.

The judge was also asked to explain the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and if it should hear election petitions other than the presidential petition.

He said the mandate of the Supreme Court should only be limited to presidential election petitions, while the Court of Appeal should be the final authority on other poll petitions.

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