Background of The National Council for the Administration of Justice

The justice system is a crucial and strategic part of any system of governance, playing a fundamental role in maintaining the rule of law, observance of human rights, and contributing to social-economic growth. The system, which entails the recursive functioning of various interdependent institutions, with decisions of one institution influencing other institutions, plays an essential role in fostering the cohesive existence of a democratic society. Fundamentally, the justice system involves the interplay of state actors, non-state actors and the citizens.

The recurrent nature of interactions between the justice system institutions is characterised by multiple policies and procedures at the different levels of service delivery, with the citizens and social groups being the beneficiaries. To the citizens, services received from the justice sector institutions impact their freedoms and rights, consequently aiding in maintaining a harmonious social structure. The citizens are satisfied when the services rendered are timely and adequate. The realisation of timeliness and adequacy in service delivery, in this case, the administration of justice services, requires rigorous and relentless coordination of the justice system institutions. The coordination function of the administration of justice in Kenya is vested with the National Council on the Administration of Justice (NCAJ).

Therefore, in the quest to address the cross-institutional inefficiencies that may occur in the delivery of justice and maintenance of the rule of law, the NCAJ was established as an umbrella body to ensure effective coordination. The coordination aims at ensuring that the Kenyan justice system renders services efficiently, effectively and collaboratively. The architecture of NCAJ comprises both the apex on a policy level and the grassroots on an operational level. While the top focuses on policy, legal and high-level administrative reforms, the grassroots level aims at harnessing community engagement, performance improvement, problem-solving and optimal utilisation of resources.

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