Note by, Nyagudi Musandu (Dr.) - Security Analyst
To the best of my knowledge I have searched the Kenya Law Cause Lists (www.kenyalaw.org) and the following matter is not sub judice by any measure. I appreciate the Independence of the Judiciary, this email is not an attempt to unduly influence the Judiciary or to interfere with a Judicial Process of any Nature. It is simply a Statement of an Alternative, to be viewed as a resource for research.
First and foremost let me begin this email by requesting that the Chief Justice provides from time to time a Platform at the Judiciary Training Institute, were Judges can be exposed to ‘split hair’ or extraordinarily controversial debates to further enrich their research and resourcing skills, by way of inviting different opinions in well balanced seminar/debates.
My question to the Judiciary on this ruling by Justice Majanja is as follows:
– Is the Judge aware that Kenya university degrees of any kind including professional degrees, e.g. Medicine, Engineer, etc are never accepted in Europe, North America, Asia(Japan, Korea, etc) without further training and/or evaluation?
– Is the Judge aware that the Engineers Registration Board is entitled to Academic Freedom(Article 33 – Bill of Rights Constitution of Kenya) not to approve degrees that it considers sub-standard?
– Is the Judge aware that the Engineers Registration Board is entitled to Freedom of Association, not to associate its approval with any university course that does not meet its requirements? Or how else would the ERB protect the Kenya Public from substandard works and personnel?
– Is the Judge aware the Commission for Higher Education and its soon to be successor, Commission for University Education as constituted in are currently as violation of Academic Freedom and Freedom of Association(Accreditation is not simply approval but Association and Approval by way of Peer Review).
– Even if the CUE to be formed was to work with professional bodies in getting course approved, it can come to the knowledge of the ERB(or other professional body) before, after or during graduation that educational instruction was substandard or riddled with malpractice. Accreditation is therefore not a suicide pact that the ERB must ‘die’ with others.
My closing comment is Bill of Rights issues are some of the most complex cases, given that we are coming from a State where Government was running everything e.g. Academics, Media, etc. The Judiciary should be careful when dealing with cases. e.g. in Academics :
– Why can’t Universities have their own Private Accreditation System? If the Government had all the knowledge and expertise Kenya would be a first world country.
– Though the Laws on Academics are drafted by Professors, etc. Most of them are Government Employees, or have be Government Employees and are not Independent.
The Government is not the SOLE PROPRIETOR OF THE WORD ACADEMIC ACCREDITATION, if that is the case where is the Academic Freedom in the Constitution? In fact I explicitly made the request to the Committee of Experts during the Constitution of Kenya review to insert the Article on Academic Freedom, to end the Government monopoly on University Accreditation. People may say Kenya has decided to follow the South Africa, India, etc model – But we do not share a Constitution with India or South Africa.