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Two Kenya top court judges fired for corruption

[JURIST] Two judges of Kenya's High Court [constitutional provisions], the court's top judicial authority, were fired from their positions Friday after two investigatory tribunals found them guilty of corruption. The judges had already been suspended while their cases were reviewed. A third High Court judge was reinstated after none of the allegations against him were found to be substantiated. Justice Vitalis Juma and Justice Thomas Mbaluto are the first two judges to be involuntarily removed from office in Kenya's 48-year history. Juma and Mbaluto were both found to have accepted bribes to resolve cases in particular ways or to speed up proceedings.

The Kenyan government has taken a number of anti-corruption initiatives in recent years, especially after President Mwai Kibaki [official profile; JURIST news archive] promised to clean up widespread government graft after being elected to office in 2002. In October 2003, 23 judges and 73 magistrates were suspended from their positions; cases against several are still pending, although most opted to retire rather than face investigation. Four suspended judges have so far been reinstated. AP has more. From Nairobi, The Nation has local coverage.

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