The Supreme Court has flexed its muscle and cautioned parties and their supporters against publicly discussing the case.
The seven-judge bench found it necessary to issue the prohibitory orders hours after petitioners appeared to instruct the judges on how to decide the matter and after supporters of President Uhuru Kenyatta took to opining on the strength of the petition.
“The Supreme Court stands together with the people of Kenya, in recognising the vital importance of arriving at a properly-considered determination of the petition… the public should, therefore, avoid making statements that are intended to direct the court on the conduct of the petition.
Since Raila filed the petition, it has drawn commentaries on local TV stations and the dailies with abandon.
The court directed the parties’ advocates to advise their clients accordingly in addition, to delivering a further warning to the public against profiling judges with a view of seeking to predict which side of the argument they are likely to take.
“It is the responsibility of the advocates on record to advise their clients in this petition, about the consequences of conduct or statements that can undermine the authority of this court…”the warning shot was fired after the petitioner’s National Super Alliance demanded that each of the seven members of the bench write out a separate ruling and that the delivery does not resemble the “two-minute” version of 2013.
Merits of the petition
It also came as several Jubilee Party members with backgrounds in law delivered commentary on the merits of the petition.
President Kenyatta, his deputy William Ruto and a handful of Jubilee legislators led by their leader in the National Assembly, Aden Duale, publicly dared the Judiciary and Chief Justice David Maraga.