On Sunday, January 28, the Judiciary and Executive, through Huduma Kenya, clarified the constitutionality of providing judicial services at Huduma Centres around the country.
This came after Chief Justice Martha Koome, Huduma Kenya CEO Ben Chilumo, and Attorney General Justin Muturi were sued over the move.
In a case filed by Carolyne Kamende Daudi, it was argued that the Judiciary was Collaborating with the Executive in a way that undermined its independence.
Responding concerning the issue, Huduma Kenya noted that the law had been followed and the plan had been in the offing since 2021.
The demand for Judiciary desks at Huduma stemmed from the desire to improve citizens’ access to justice and strengthen partnerships that improve coordination in the administration of justice,” it was noted.
The idea of providing judicial services was initially proposed on July 16, 2021, at the National Council on Administration of Justice (NCAJ) Special State Actors meeting.
During the discussion, it was decided that establishing the Huduma Centre Judiciary Desk would increase access to justice for all Kenyans.
Three months after the NCAJ, a court determined that measures and activities ensuring public and advocate access to courts and services must be implemented within 30 days.
“On November 21, 2023, Chief Justice Martha Koome appointed the Steering Committee for the engagement comprising of three senior officers from the Judiciary and officers of the Huduma Kenya Secretariat chaired by Justice Kanyi Kimondo, presiding Judge of the Criminal Division,” highlighted Huduma Kenya in a press release.
Members of the public were also told that procedures had been put in place to protect customers from fraudsters who claimed to offer legal advice at Huduma Center
The Court registry staff at Huduma Centres will ensure that representatives of legal firms or Advocates are served upon presentation of their individual ID cards,” according to reports.
Additionally, access to the Judiciary desks will be granted only through the Service by Appointment (SBA) system.
According to Huduma Kenya, this will ensure that clients are electronically registered and queued to identify and prevent fraud.