7 Apr 2009

Martha Karua, Kenya’s Justice and Constitutional Affairs minister has resigned from the Grand Coalition Government.

“I will continue to participate in nation building as a Member of Parliament and a leader," Ms Karua told a Press conference in Nairobi on Monday.

“I will now be able to totally disagree with anything that is anti-reform,” she said.

She made good her threat to quit only a day after declaring “enough is enough” after attending a church service at the Anglican Church in Nairobi.

She has said that she decided to resign because of frustrations in discharging her duties.

President Kibaki appointed five new High Court judges on Friday last week and promoted two others to the Court of Appeal. She said she was not aware of the President’s move.

As the minister in charge of Justice, Ms Karua expected to be consulted before new judges were appointed.

“If my hands are tied and the Judiciary continues to be used as a place where people sacked from parastatals are recycled, the agenda is forestalled and all reforms are annihilated, then I better leave and fights for the rights of ordinary mwananchi,” she said after the appointments.

She becomes the first Kenyan minister to resign from the Grand Coalition Government.

The Government, which brought together President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odiinga, was formed to help end post election violence following a disputed presidential election.

The opposition Orange Democratic Movement said that its candidate, Raila Odinga, was denied victory through rigging and claimed it could not accept results of a stolen election.

The violence that broke out left 1,133 people dead and a further 350,000 displaced.

Ms Karua had accused the Judiciary of being lethargic and anti-reform and laid the blame on Chief Justice Evans Gicheru.

She lashed out at the CJ accusing him of blocking judicial reforms in the country and called for his removal.

However, President Kibaki has since expressed his confidence at the Chief Justice and dismissed a petition from the Law Society of Kenya calling for the CJ’s ouster.

SOURCE:Daily Nation


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