He Spoke to our Reporter Shadrack Nyakoe
1)Tell us about yourself?
I was born in Nairobi on Feb 17, 1993, at Nairobi hospital.
I went to primary school at St Georges school and later St Nicholas school there after transitioned to high school in Kitusuru boys in Form 1. Later transferred to Pumwani boys then finished at Nairobi Pentecostal Church Senior school.
After that, I joined University of Nairobi law school. I graduated with Honors in 2016 and later did my Post Graduate Diploma at the Kenya school of law. I passed the Bar exams and was admitted to the Bar on February 14, 2019.
2) What is your motivation in life?
I was born with Haemophilia. I was first diagnosed two weeks after birth and since then my life changed. I have grown up to face the challenges of living with a bleeding disorder.
I know the challenges people living with Haemophila go through. I decided to be an advocate for people with Haemophila to ensure their quality of life is much better than what some of us experienced at a young age.
We came up with activities including creating awareness, resource mobilization, capacity building of medical practitioners and lobbying the government for inclusion and support by providing us with drugs and funding which it is yet to materialize
3) How long have you practiced law?
I have practiced law for a year now.
4) What type of cases do you handle?
I deal with civil cases that touch on contracts, land, corporate issues, criminal cases, probate and administration, family, divorce and children cases. However, my area of specialization is basically company /corporate law, conveyancing/property law and civil litigation
5) Who is your typical client?
Well apart from family and friends I have worked with several corporates/companies which give referrals after I conclude work with /for them and so far, having a good record and reputation of good work done, I get good referrals which build my clientele.
6) How many cases have you represented that were similar to crime or political cases?
So far, I haven’t dealt with election petitions or any politically affiliated cases but it’s an area I wouldn’t hesitate to delve into.
7) Other than a law degree, what kind of special training or knowledge do you have that might apply in your career?
I am currently in the process of furthering my education and scope of specialization. I have currently applied to do my masters in a school in the United Kingdom waiting for the preliminaries to be concluded so that I begin. I am also in the process of enrolling to study Arbitration with a view of joining the chartered Institute of arbitrators.
8) What are your attorney fees and costs, and how are they billed?
How lawyers charge their clients is purely guided by the advocates remuneration order which provides guidance on how to bill in every scenario and cases that one may tackle.
Any deviation from the same amounts to an offense under the Advocates Act and the said advocate may be subject to disciplinary action.
About paralegals yes, we do have two students who assist in filing and arranging the court diary, however the bulk of the work which involves drafting of documents and attending court is done by myself and my partner.
9) What is your major achievement?
Apart from overcoming the challenges of growing up with a bleeding disorder, I feel I have evolved mentally, spiritually and of course intellectually in that I see no boundaries as to what I can achieve in life.
10) What do you consider yourself good at doing?
I would say I am very good at networking and relating with different people.
11) Are there other ways for solving legal problems in Kenya other than the Courts?
Yes, we do have alternative dispute resolution mechanisms otherwise known as ADR which includes mediation, arbitration, conciliation and negotiation. The constitution of Kenya 2010 under article 159 2 (c) greatly encourages these forms of administration of Justice with a view of enabling parties to come to an amicable solution. These helps save courts time and resources.
12) Corruption nowadays is like another Kenyan anthem. Lawyers too are not immune. What do you think should be done to insulate the lawyer-client relationship, to a point where even the public can have total confidence to their lawyers as well hope for justice?
First, the lawyer client relationship is already protected under the principle of advocate client privilege. This means that whatever the circumstances, a lawyer is not allowed to disclose any private affairs or any information whatsoever concerning his client in the event their business is over. Lawyers themselves must be people of integrity who can be trusted.
13) What are your strengths and weaknesses?
My strengths are that I can handle all matters under my docket regardless of the pressure or urgency. I am a professional who ensures due diligence.
My weakness is that I tend to put my client’s needs and demands as a priority at the expense of my own needs.
This is at the expense of my family and friends, but I strongly believe this is the nature of the profession.
14) Did you always want to be a lawyer?
Not really, I wanted to be a doctor so that I can treat patients with bleeding disorders such as myself. Unfortunately, in high school, I wasn’t good in Mathematics and Chemistry. I passed my humanities and social sciences which were required as cut off in doing Law. I also have several relatives who are lawyers and they inspired me.
15) What is your message to aspiring law students?
Law, unlike other careers is a profession which requires discipline, diligence, a steadfast spirit and most of all endurance. It is always a long and tough journey that if you falter along the way -you may fail.
16) What mantra do you live by?
My mantra is I live a life of faith where before all others God is the pillar of all possibilities. Secondly a life lived with a positive mind with good intentions will only attract the same energy and people of similar energy which yields success and prosperity.
17) What is your Parting shot?
We all are put on earth with one purpose. Many times, we live a life devoid of purpose and instead of searching for it, we have excuses. We should have a Purpose. Aman without a purpose will have nothing to live for.