Judiciary Services Launched in Huduma Centres: Judiciary Staff to Handle Desks

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Judiciary Services pilot at Huduma Kenya launched by moses kuria

This morning, six judiciary services commenced at six pilot Huduma Centres: Nairobi GPO, City Square, Makadara, Kibra, Eastleigh, and Kiambu. This is part of a new partnership between the Judiciary and Huduma Secretariat.

The rollout of judicial services will extend to the remaining 52 Huduma Centres nationwide and subsequently to all Huduma Jitume Centres in the 290 constituencies. The Judiciary desks at Huduma Centres will be exclusively staffed by Judiciary personnel.

The Judiciary services to be offered include:

1. Filing of new civil cases

2. Filing documents of existing cases

3. Request for and issuance of summons to enter appearance, notice to appear in divorce cases, extracted court orders, decrees, certified and uncertified proceedings, copy of ruling/judgement.

4. Request and issuance of mention dates

5. General case inquiries.

6. E-filing support.

7. Payments of fines and deposits.

8 Virtual court support.

The move is seen as key to tackle digital exclusion. Kenyan courts are moving online (efilling and virtual courts). Government says that establishing of Huduma desks across the Country will help expand and deepen access to court services for the unrepresented poor citizens. Hence, mitigating the potential of leaving the vulnerable behind.

Fear of Quacks

Last week, the Kenyan legal fraternity had opposed the move. The lawyers argued that it will open doors for quacks and masqueraders as well as interfere with the independence of the judiciary. The lawyers had feared that permitting non-judicial individuals to manage court registries at Huduma centers could lead to unqualified individuals offering services.

Today’s announcement that judicial staff will man the desk may help allay those fears. However, the lawyers had much preferred that the government funded the judiciary and leave Huduma Kenya to carry out it’s regular services.

Bernard Kipkoech Ngetich, a contender for LSK presidency, expressed concern saying:

“Huduma centres have enough problems already and there is no need to add them other roles. The government should instead provide enough money for the judiciary to build courts and employ officers in all constituencies,”.

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