P.L.O Lumumba challenges law students to think big

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Senior lawyers in the country have challenged students to welcome different opportunities emerging in the sector, to enrich their careers.

Former Kenya School of Law director P.L.O Lumumba and senior council Fred Ngatia observed that the legal industry is changing each day.

“The law students should also consider venturing into studying East African law with the concept of coming up with a common currency.

“We need to look at these new fields and diversify law as it is no longer what is used to be where you are a jerk of all trades and a master of none,” he said.

CHANGE

Mr Ngatia said lawyers are now in an era surrounded by rapid technological evolution and must accept change.

“Young lawyers entering this most noble profession do not need god fathers but hard work. But hard work is not enough. You must know your marker, God,” Mr Ngatia said.

They made the remarks at Laico Regency Hotel during a luncheon organised by Mount Kenya University (MKU) School of Law, following its accreditation by the Council of Legal Education (CLE).

All public and private schools of law are required to get licences pursuant to Legal Education Act and other regulatory agencies.

Prof Lumumba spoke on the “Role of law schools in developing countries in training legal practitioners to champion sustainable development and democracy” and Mr Ngatia elaborated on “Navigating the contours of legal profession”.

OBLIGATION

MKU founder and chairman Simon Gicharu said the accreditation is a milestone, promising that the institution will continue to churn out qualified lawyers.

“This journey has not been easy. When I bought a building in Nairobi on Moi Avenue, I thought I now had everything for the school to be accredited, I was wrong.

“The CLE insisted that the building was not conducive for law students and we had to move to Parklands,” Dr Gicharu recalled.

He went on: “We are giving students an opportunity to learn in Kenya and therefore no need to go to Uganda and India to study law.”

Law Society of Kenya President Allen Gichuhi said lawyers will continue to defend the Constitution because it is their duty.

Rwandan High Commissioner to Kenya James Kimonyo praised the university for its investment in education.

“We have 100 students from Rwanda studying at MKU Thika main campus. We laud this partnership and we will continue to work together,” Ambassador Kimonyo said.

AMBITION

MKU has been pursuing full accreditation for the last seven years since its first application and subsequent issuance of a provisional licence in 2011.

“The institution’s intake for LL.B programme is hereby limited to a maximum of 200 students per take.

“The Council shall have the sole discretion to review this condition on its own motion or on application by the university,” the letter to Prof Waudo dated July 30 by CLE acting Chief Executive Officer J.K Gakeri reads.

CLE gave the university three months from July 30 to submit a corrective action plan for all the areas it is required to ensure compliance.

MKU now joins Riara University, Nazarene University, the University of Nairobi, Egerton University, Strathmore University, Kenyatta University, Jomo Kenyatta School of Law and Catholic University of Eastern Africa School of Law as accredited law institutions.

Others who attended the event were Vice-Chancellor Peter Waudo and Prof Yash Pal.