Justice Matthews Nduma Nderi aspires to rise from the role of Employment and Labour Relations Court judge to that of Chief Officer of the Judiciary as a whole, i.e. the Chief Justice’s office. – By Gerald Gekara.
This isn’t a case of irrational ambition. Anyone who believes Justice Nderi is a rank underdog in the race for the Chief Justice’s seat will be mistaken.
You wouldn’t write him off if you looked at the role of Chief Justice of Kenya as needing a person with a diverse set of legal and non-legal skills and experiences.
Justice Nderi has a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Nairobi and a Master of Laws degree in International Trade Law from Stellenbosch University in South Africa.
He was admitted as an Advocate of the High Court in 1988. He served as a legal assistant in a firm after being admitted to the Bar before starting his own firm in 1989.
His professional sojourn in Swaziland’s Bar and Bench provided him with foreign working experience. Beginning in 1993, he worked as a Senior Crown Counsel for the Government of Swaziland, where he practiced law for five years.
After returning to Kenya from Swaziland, Justice Nderi spent two years as the Head of the Legal Division of Kenya’s preeminent employers’ trade union, the Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE), followed by a stint as the Principal Legal Officer of the East African Community.
In 2012, he was nominated to the Employment and Labour Relations Court of Kenya by the East African Community.