Supreme Court Justice David Majanja dies in Nairobi

Supreme Court Justice David Majanja has died. Justice Martha Koome confirmed the sudden death on Wednesday, July 10, saying the judicial fraternity was devastated.

“We are all devastated,” Judge Koome said.

She added that Judge Majanja will be remembered as a prominent figure in the development of our transformational jurisprudence after 2010 and as a key pillar in the institutional development of the Commission and the judiciary.

The judge was recently re-elected as a member of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), representing the Kenya Magistrates and Judges Association. He died on Wednesday, July 10, at a hospital in Nairobi where he was receiving treatment.

Judge Majanja, stationed at the Civil Division of the Milimani High Court, was re-elected to the JSC for a second term on May 25.

He was appointed a judge of the High Court in 2011 and previously served as a judge in Kisumu and other court posts.

Prior to his re-election to the JSC, Judge Majanja served as Chairman of the Human Resources Management Committee and a member of the Audit, Governance and Risk Management Committee and the Learning and Development Committee.

He holds a Master of Laws (LLM) from the University of Pretoria and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Nairobi.

He was a member of the adjudicating panel that found the housing tax contained in the Finance Act 2023 to be discriminatory and unconstitutional.

Senior Counsel Kiragu Kimani described the passing of Judge Majanja as tragic. He described Judge Majanja as a perfect gentleman and a great human being.

“Certainly one of the best referees we’ve ever had. His work ethic was unmatched and I doubt anyone could match his achievements in terms of quantity and quality of decisions,” Mr Kimani said.

Faith Odhiambo, president of the Lawyers Association of Kenya (LSK), said the legal profession has lost one of the greatest minds in its field.

“His diligent contribution to the jurisprudence of our country and his commitment to upholding standards of excellence in the judicial service have created an extraordinary legacy for which he will be fondly remembered and greatly missed,” Ms Odhiambo said in her X post.

His profile

Appointment to the judicial service

  • Appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court in 2011.
  • He served as a judge in the Homa Bay, Migori, Kisumu and Kisii High Courts.
  • He worked in the Commercial and Tax Division and the Civil Division of the High Court in Milimani.

Academic and professional qualifications

  • Master of Laws (LLM), International Trade and Investment Law in Africa, University of Pretoria (2005)
  • Bachelor of Laws (LLB), University of Nairobi (1996)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Law, Kenya School of Law
  • Admitted to the bar in 1998.
  • He deals with civil and commercial law.
  • He has participated in litigation in the public interest.
  • Legal Counsel to the Commission of Inquiry into Post-Election Violence (Waki Commission)
  • Commissioner of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC)
  • Chairman of the Justice Committee of the JSC.
  • Member of the Committee on the Rules of Court
  • The Presiding Judge of the High Court of Homa Bay and Migori,
  • Member and later Vice-Chairman of the Working Committee for Electoral Preparations of the Supreme Court (JWCEP)