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Litigation Hall of Fame: Eric Mutua, OGW, SC, 46th POLSK

Eric is the founding and Managing Partner of the E.K. Mutua & Company Advocates, a medium-size corporate and commercial law firm established with a reputation of excellent and innovative legal practice of more than 2 years.

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Eric K. Mutua, OGW, the 46th President of the Law Society of Kenya from 2012 to 2016 and Managing Partner of E.K Mutua & Company

Since the founding of LSK in 1949, Eric Kyalo Mutua is the only President of Law Society of Kenya to has served for 4 years having been elected for two consecutive terms of 2 years. Eric also remains the LSK President elected with the largest majority of votes (79%) in the last two decades. He served as the 46th Chairman/President of the Law Society of Kenya from 2012 to 2016 and oversaw the critical role LSK played in laying the ground for the peaceful first transition of Government under the Constitution of Kenya 2010. Eric is recognized as an excellent and formidable litigator and commercial lawyer and has successfully acted in dozens of precedent-setting and high value matters for individuals, corporates and public entities.

Eric Mutua is an advocate of the High Court of Kenya of more than 28 years good standing having been admitted to the bar in 1995. He holds Masters of Law (LLM) degree and Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree both from the University of Nairobi and a Diploma in Law from the Kenya School of Law and is also a Certified Public Secretary, a Commissioner of Oaths, a Notary Public and an Arbitrator and a specialist in litigation and dispute resolution and has handled numerous complex commercial and constitutional cases in all levels Kenyan and regional courts and tribunals including High Court, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court of Kenya and East African Court of Justice (EACJ). He also represents claimants and respondents in complex and contested arbitration claims before domestic and international arbitration panels.

Eric has extensive experience advising and handling cases in international law, constitutional law and human rights, land and environmental law, real estate and construction disputes, commercial litigation, corporate governance including shareholder disputes, insurance, aviation law and insurance, sports dispute resolution, intellectual property in particular trademarks opposition and expungement proceedings, insolvency, debt collection and creditors’ rights, banking and financial claims, communications, professional liability defense, regulatory compliance, employment and labour law, criminal and economic crimes law and international commercial arbitration.

Recent Key Cases Handled by Eric Mutua

One of the recent key case Eric has been involved in is representing Kenya Airport Authority (KAA) in the long-running landmark case of Mitu-Bell Welfare Society v Kenya Airports Authority & 2 others [2021] eKLR at the High Court, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. In this case which was filed in High Court in 2011 and went all the way to Supreme Court, Eric was defending KAA which was accused of forceful eviction without due notice and despite a Court order prohibiting evictions of more than 15,000 men, women and children from Mitumba village near Wilson Airport, through the demolition of their homes and schools, leaving them homeless.

The case featured prominently in the just concluded Chief Justice interviews because it is the standing authority on the place of structural interdicts as a form of relief in human rights litigation in Kenya. The Supreme Court upheld the applicability of structural interdicts by restating its holding in Communications Commission of Kenya & 4 others v Royal Media Services Limited & 7 others [2014] eKLR that Article 23(3) of the Constitution, in listing the appropriate reliefs a court may grant, uses the word ‘including’ implying that the reliefs listed therein are non-exhaustive. Therefore, a court can issue orders other than those listed as it deems fit, to be decided on a case-by-case basis.

Eric also successfully acted for a State Corporation in an Appeal to the High Court in a matter seeking to set aside a Ksh. 9.4 billion arbitration award given to a tenant on basis that it was unconstitutional and against public policy. High Court concurred with Eric that the impugned Arbitration award was contrary to public policy as the arbitrator (a former High Court Judge) had ignored, disregarded and/or misinterpreted the legal effect of a decision by the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in a related matter where the Government of Kenya was a party.

Eric successfully represented the Plaintiff against a Major Insurance Company in a case that interrogated whether a clause in the insurance policy limiting liability to third parties to a certain amount is valid and enforceable in law under Insurance (Motor Vehicles Third Party Risks) Act, Cap. 405 of the Laws of Kenya. The clause currently limiting liability to Ksh. 3 Million did not exist at the time. The Court found that such clause was invalid, void and unenforceable and the insurer was bound to pay the third parties the amount of compensation awarded by Court.

He also acted for a claimant in an aviation insurance arbitration matter against four (4) major insurance companies who had insured his registered aircraft which was involved in an accident and was extensively damaged. The dispute involved the applicability of the “component parts clause” of the aviation insurance policy and whether the claimant incurred loss and damage payable under the insurance policy. Eric convinced the arbitration tribunal to find in favour of his client that the component parts clause was not applicable in the instant case and that the claimant incurred loss and damages covered and was entitled to compensation under the insurance policy.

Barely 5 years after admission, Eric hit the headlines representing Eric Keter, an international athlete, at the Court of Appeal following the decision of the Kenya Amateur Athletics Associations to exclude him from the national team selected to participate in Sydney Olympic Games of 2000 despite being the reigning national champion at the time.  The court found that the Defendants had discriminated the athlete and unfairly denied him the opportunity to to represent Kenya in the Olympics and issued a mandatory injunction ordering the Defendants to enlist and register him as a qualifying member of the Kenyan team for the games.

Eric also famously acted for the Murang’a Senator Hon Irungu Kangata and Nominated MP Hon David Sankok and 5 other student leaders of the University of Nairobi in a case that challenged the decision to expel them with the Late Mutula Kilonzo Senior representing the University. The High Court cancelled the expulsion but ordered their disciplinary case to be remitted back to the University with Directions that Kangata, Sankok and the fellow students to be tried. Eric appealed the order for retrial of the students and the Court of Appeal stayed that portion of the order allowing Kangata and Sankok and the rest to continue with their studies.

National, Regional and the Continental Legal Perspective

Eric is a member of the International Bar Association, Commonwealth Law Association, Pan African Lawyers Association (PALU), East Africa Law Society, the Law Society of Kenya, Institute of Certified Secretaries (ICS) of Kenya and Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. Eric has been awarded many professional accolades including MEA Africa Legal 100 and is a recipient of the Order of Grand Warrior of Kenya (OGW) award by the President of Kenya.

In addition to serving as the 46th President of the Law Society of Kenya, Eric served as Council Member of LSK for more than a decade, Treasurer of East African Law Society, Vice-President Pan African Lawyers Union (PALU) and Board Member of Council of Legal Education. The broad exposure and experience serving lawyers as a top official in these National, Regional and the Continental Associations has given Eric unique understanding of legal business environment across Africa. He is also able to leverage the extensive contacts built over the years across the world to offer a wide range of legal services for business in the Kenyan, East African and African markets for the past 22 years.

Eric is the founding and Managing Partner of the E.K. Mutua & Company Advocates, a medium-size corporate and commercial law firm established with a reputation of excellent and innovative legal practice of more than 25 years. The firm is structured into four main practice groups, namely, Litigation and Dispute Resolution Practice, Commercial and Corporate Practice, Banking and Finance Practice and Real and Intellectual Property Practice. The firm’s operations are based at its head office in the Flamingo Towers, 9th Floor, in Upperhill, the emerging Commercial and Financial Hub of Nairobi City.

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Njoki Mboce: I am Members Project for LSK President

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By Njoki Mboce for LSK President 2024-2026 Team

Today, LSK faces an existential threat from those who seek to compromise its mandate by aligning with the regime in ongoing attempts to undermine the place of the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) and erode the Rule of Law. This has the potential to regress the country to a state of impunity and dictatorship reminiscent of the past.

In such turbulent times, the LSK requires a leader who is resolute, decisive, and impartial. Harriet Njoki Mboce is this suitable leader, with a firm reputation, who will speak Truth to power in the face of encroaching dictatorship.

The actions of a candidate are a mirror of who they are, and what they will be in office. If a candidate wants the office at all costs, and abuses members’ trust to get there, they will have no integrity while in office. Harriet Njoki Mboce is unequivocally the LSK Members’ project. Boldly and firmly acting to defend Independence of the BAR, institutions, and the Rule of Law, she has maintained this commitment throughout her campaigns for President of LSK. This offers a strong basis to fearlessly champion members’ interests and protect the BAR from capture by the State and unscrupulous cartels.

Growing up, I dreamt of being a Navy Officer. I never in my wildest dreams imagined that I would one day be seeking the Presidency of an organisation previously led by impeccable names such as SC Gibson Kamau Kuria, SC Pheroze Nowrojee, SC Paul Muite, SC Hon Dr. Willy Mutunga (CJ Emeritus) and SC Raychelle Omamo, among others. It has taken resilience and a high dose of firm, and bold commitment to get here.

LSK requires a leader to withstand the pressure within and without, and to take the heat on behalf of the membership, whenever the Country and the Society’s living tenets come under threat. This resilience as a quality in the President of LSK enables me in a big way to see the wider horizon of the environment we operate in, to prepare for the storms and to boldly and firmly focus and act on our bigger mandate.

Come elections day, 29th February, 2024, I invite members to ask themselves: Which candidate shows real signs that they will not be corrupted, will run an accountable organisation and will sustain the moral and probity to place the LSK on a path of Independence? I humbly seek your vote to bring this desire home. Please vote for the Member’s project, Harriet Njoki Mboce, HSC for President of The Law Society of Kenya (2024-2026)

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Way Forward in Ensuring Just Transition in Climate Justice

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By Hon. Prof. Kariuki Muigua, OGW, PhD, C.Arb, FCIArb is a Professor of Environmental Law and Dispute Resolution at the University of Nairobi, Member of Permanent Court of Arbitration, Leading Environmental Law Scholar, Respected Sustainable Development Policy Advisor, Top Natural Resources Lawyer, Highly-Regarded Dispute Resolution Expert and Awardee of the Order of Grand Warrior (OGW) of Kenya by H.E. the President of Republic of Kenya. He is The African ADR Practitioner of the Year 2022, The African Arbitrator of the Year 2022, ADR Practitioner of the Year in Kenya 2021, CIArb (Kenya) Lifetime Achievement Award 2021 and ADR Publisher of the Year 2021 and Author of the Kenya’s First ESG Book: Embracing Environmental Social and Governance (ESG) tenets for Sustainable Development” (Glenwood, Nairobi, July 2023) and Kenya’s First Two Climate Change Law Book: Combating Climate Change for Sustainability (Glenwood, Nairobi, October 2023), Achieving Climate Justice for Development (Glenwood, Nairobi, October 2023) and Promoting Rule of Law for Sustainable Development (Glenwood, Nairobi, January 2024)*

In order to embrace just transition, it is imperative to build a climate resilient and integrated sustainable energy sector in Africa and other regions which are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. It has been observed that Africa has rich energy and mineral resources including lithium, graphite, cobalt, nickel, copper, and rare earth minerals all of which provide new market opportunities for the green transition. This coupled with the Continent’s renewable energy potential means that Africa has the capacity to achieve just transition to an equitable and inclusive low-carbon future.

It has correctly been observed that Africa has immense potential for renewable energy including wind, solar, hydro, bioenergy, ocean tidal waves, geothermal among other renewables. It has been pointed out that in order to ensure delivery of global climate change mitigation goals, developing countries will need to drive investment towards building a renewable energy infrastructure that can serve their populations into the future and not drive further climate breakdown.

A just transition promotes the shift towards renewable sources of energy and sustainable practices, reducing the reliance on fossil fuels and mitigating the impacts of climate change. It is therefore important for developing countries to embrace just transition by promoting renewable sources of energy in order to achieve climate justice and energy justice. It is also essential to integrate just transition initiatives in national climate action plans and adaptation plans.

It has been observed that the importance of just transition is increasingly being recognized by governments worldwide as they cite just transition principles in their short- and long-term climate plans known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and Long-Term Strategies (LTSs). Embedding just transition strategies within short and long term climate plans like NDCs and LTS, can help governments stay focused on the urgent task at hand of rapid decarbonization, while also striving for fair and inclusive outcomes.

In Kenya, the National Climate Change Action Plan enshrines the principles of just transition and seeks to foster an equitable and inclusive climate response which ensures an electricity supply mix based mainly on renewable energy that is resilient to climate change and promotes energy efficiency; encourage the transition to clean cooking that reduces the demand for biomass; and reduced exposure and vulnerability of the country, and especially of the poor and vulnerable groups, to climate disasters and shocks. It is therefore necessary for countries to incorporate just transition initiatives in their NDCs and LTSs in order to achieve efficient climate outcomes. This will demonstrate commitment towards achieving climate justice while securing public support for ambitious and stronger climate action.

Further, there is need to unlock and align climate finance with the idea of just transition. It has been argued that governments have an obligation to mobilize sustainable, affordable, predictable and long-term finance from public and private, domestic and international sources, and aligning public and private financial flows and public procurement to the objectives of a just transition. According to the UNFCCC, increased climate finance is needed to effectively address the challenges and seize the opportunities of just transitions in country-specific and sector-specific pathways considering the local circumstances.

Climate finance has been identified as a key tool towards fostering climate justice since it recognizes the inequalities between countries with developing countries being the most vulnerable to the effects of climate change and thus requiring financial resources to aid their mitigation and adaptation programmes86. It is therefore imperative for all countries and especially developing countries to unlock climate finance from multiple sources including public, private and multilateral sources in order to achieve just transition by addressing the socio-economic impacts of climate change and addressing climate inequalities more broadly through efficient mitigation and adaptation strategies.

In addition, it is necessary to embrace and enhance technology transfer between developed and developing countries in order to enhance the capacity of the former to later to embrace just transition. It has been pointed out that developing countries have vast renewable potential, but are unable to realize it as long as they are constrained by lack of access to green technologies. Without access to environmentally sound technologies, developing countries in particular least developed countries, will not be able to meet mitigation targets and will be forced to continue using carbon-intensive technologies resulting in climate and sustainability concerns.

Transferring low-carbon and green technologies to those most at risk of climate crisis is critical, among a range of other measures, to ensure that people can respond and adapt to the threat of climate change. Technology transfer can support the climate agenda in developing countries for energy and other sectoral transitions.

The Paris Agreement acknowledges the importance of technology for the implementation of mitigation and adaptation actions and urges countries to promote and facilitate enhanced action on technology development and transfer in order to support the implementation of the Agreement. It is thus pertinent for developed countries to promote transfer of low-carbon technologies including green technologies in developing countries in order to support climate action in such countries.

Developing countries should on the other hand remove barriers to green technology transfer including Intellectual Property barriers and revise bilateral and multilateral trade agreements that present a barrier to transfer initiatives. Finally, there is need to foster capacity building in order to effectively realize just transition. One of the key challenges in achieving climate justice through just transition has been identified to be inadequate national capacity on just transition initiatives.

Capacity building can strengthen individual and institutional capacities on just transition in key areas such as policymaking, cross-sectoral coordination, and stakeholder participation. It can further enhance the ability of the public to be involved in key decisions in the journey towards just transition. It has been pointed out that participation and engagement are crucial for achieving just sustainability transitions.

Capacity building is therefore integral in achieving just transition. It is thus necessary for all countries and especially developing states to strengthen their legal, institutional, technical, human, social and financial capacity in order to embrace just transition. The above among other measures are necessary in order to achieve equitable and inclusive just transition towards climate justice.

*This is an extract from the Book: Promoting Rule of Law for Sustainable Development (Glenwood, Nairobi, January 2024) by Hon. Prof.  Kariuki Muigua, OGW, PhD, Professor of Environmental Law and Dispute Resolution, Senior Advocate of Kenya, Chartered Arbitrator, Kenya’s ADR Practitioner of the Year 2021 (Nairobi Legal Awards), ADR Lifetime Achievement Award 2021 (CIArb Kenya), African Arbitrator of the Year 2022, Africa ADR Practitioner of the Year 2022, Member of National Environment Tribunal (NET) Emeritus (2017 to 2023) and Member of Permanent Court of Arbitration nominated by Republic of Kenya. Prof. Kariuki Muigua is a foremost Environmental Law and Natural Resources Lawyer and Scholar, Sustainable Development Advocate and Conflict Management Expert in Kenya. Prof. Kariuki Muigua teaches Environmental Law and Dispute resolution at the University of Nairobi School of Law, The Center for Advanced Studies in Environmental Law and Policy (CASELAP) and Wangari Maathai Institute for Peace and Environmental Studies. He has published numerous books and articles on Environmental Law, Environmental Justice Conflict Management, Alternative Dispute Resolution and Sustainable Development. Prof. Muigua is also a Chartered Arbitrator, an Accredited Mediator, the Managing Partner of Kariuki Muigua & Co. Advocates and Africa Trustee Emeritus of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators 2019-2022. Prof. Muigua is a 2023 recipient of President of the Republic of Kenya Order of Grand Warrior (OGW) Award for his service to the Nation as a Distinguished Expert, Academic and Scholar in Dispute Resolution and recognized among the top 5 leading lawyers and dispute resolution experts in Band 1 in Kenya by the Chambers Global Guide 2024 and was listed in the Inaugural THE LAWYER AFRICA Litigation Hall of Fame 2023 as one of the Top 50 Most Distinguished Litigation Lawyers in Kenya and the Top Arbitrator in Kenya in 2023.

References

Africa Union., ‘Agenda 2063: The Africa we Want.’ Available at https://au.int/sites/default/files/documents/33126- docframework_document_book.pdf (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

African Development Bank Group., ‘Just Transition Initiative to Address Climate Change in the African Context.’ Available at https://www.afdb.org/en/topics-andsectors/initiatives-partnerships/climate-investment-funds-cif/just-transitioninitiative (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

Climate Policy., ‘Just Transition and Climate Justice.’ Available at https://www.tandfonline.com/journals/tcpo20/collections/Just-Transition-andClimate-Justice (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

Colenbrander. S et al., ‘Using Climate Finance to Advance Climate Justice: The Politics and Practice of Channeling Resources to the Local Level.’ Climate Policy, 2017.

European Commission., ‘The Just Transition Mechanism: Making Sure no One is Left Behind.’ Available at https://commission.europa.eu/strategy-and-policy/priorities2019-2024/european-green-deal/finance-and-green-deal/just-transition-mechanism_en (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

European Environment Agency., ‘The Case for Public Participation in Sustainability Transitions.’ Available at https://www.eea.europa.eu/publications/the-case-forpublic-participation (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

Giles, M., ‘The Principles of Climate Justice at CoP27.’ Available at https://earth.org/principlesofclimatejustice/#:~:text=That%20response%20should %20be%20based,the %20consequences%20of%20clim ate%20change (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

Government of Kenya., ‘National Climate Change Action Plan (Kenya): 2018-2022.’ Nairobi: Ministry of Environment and Forestry (2018)., Available at https://www.lse.ac.uk/GranthamInstitute/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/8737.pdf (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

International Institute for Sustainable Development., ‘Rethinking Technology Transfer to Support the Climate Agenda.’ Available at https://sdg.iisd.org/commentary/guest-articles/rethinking-technology-transfer-to-supportthe-climate-agenda/ (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

International Labour Organization., ‘Frequently Asked Questions on Just Transition.’ Available at https://www.ilo.org/global/topics/greenjobs/WCMS_824102/lang–en/index.htm (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

International Organization of Employers., ‘Climate Change and Just Transition.’ Available at https://www.ioe-emp.org/policy-priorities/climate-change-and-just-transitions (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

Kemei. N., ‘Navigating the Path of Just Transition: Kenya’s Sustainable Future.’ Available at https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/navigating-path-just-transitionkenyas-sustainable-future-naomikemei/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=member_android&utm_campaign=share _via (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

Lee. S., ‘Unpacking Just Transition: What is it and How Can We Achieve it in Africa?.’ Available at https://climatepromise.undp.org/news-and-stories/unpacking-justtransition-what-it-and-how-can-we-achieve-itafrica?gad_source=1&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI7ufGuYrpggMVboVoCR2gtAn3EAAYASAAE gL8VvD_BwE (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

McCauley. D., & Heffron. R., ‘Just Transition: Integrating Climate, Energy and Environmental Justice.’ Energy Policy., Volume 119, 2018, pp 1-7.

Monica. T & Bronwyn. L., ‘Community Lawyering and Climate Justice: A New Frontier.’ Alternative Law Journal (47) 3 pp 199-203.

Muigua. K., ‘Achieving Sustainable Development, Peace and Environmental Security.’ Glenwood Publishers Limited, 2021.

Muigua. K., ‘Fostering Climate Justice for Sustainable Development.’ Available at https://kmco.co.ke/wp-content/uploads/2023/07/Fostering-Climate-Justice-forSustainable- Development.pdf (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

Newell. P., ‘Toward Transformative Climate Justice: An Emerging Research Agenda.’ WIREs Climate Change., Volume 12, Issue 6 (2021).

Oxfam., ‘Climate Justice.’ Available at https://www.oxfam.org.au/what-wedo/climate-justice/ (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

Partnership for Action on Green Economy., ‘Argentina’s Capacity Building on Green Jobs and Just Transition.’ Available at https://www.un-page.org/news/argentinascapacity-building-on-green-jobs-and-just-transition/ (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

Ramsey County., ‘On climate justice: Climate Change and Environmental Justice.’ Available at https://www.ramseycounty.us/content/climate-justice-climate-changeand-environmentaljustice#:~:text= Climate%20Justice%20is%20a%20subset,the%20impacts%20of%20cli mate%20change (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

Schlosberg. D & Collins. L., ‘From Environmental to Climate Justice: Climate Change and the Discourse of Environmental Justice.’ WIREs Clim Change, 2014.

Smith. J., ‘Global Climate Justice Activism: “The New Protagonists” and their Projects for a Just Transition.’ Available at https://web.archive.org/web/20190429063257id_/http://dscholarship.pitt.edu/ 35560/1/Smith%20and%20Patterson%20Unequal%20Exchange%20Volume%20New%20Protagonists%2 0DScholarship.pdf (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

Sultana. F., ‘Critical Climate Justice.’ Available at https://www.farhanasultana.com/wp-content/uploads/Sultana-Critical-climatejustice.pdf (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development., ‘A Global Just Transition: Climate and Development Goals in a World of Extreme Inequalities.’ Available at https://unctad.org/system/files/non-officialdocument/UNCTAD_Just_Transition_BACKGROUND _NOTE_COP27.pdf (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs., ‘Forum on Climate Change and Science and Technology Innovation.’ Available at https://www.un.org/en/desa/forum-climatechangeandscience-and-technologyinnovation (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

United Nations Development Programme., ‘Climate Change is a Matter of Justice – Here’s Why.’ Available at https://climatepromise.undp.org/news-andstories/climate-change-matter-justice-heres-why (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

United Nations Development Programme., ‘What is just transition? And why is it important?.’ Available at https://climatepromise.undp.org/news-and-stories/whatjust-transition-and-why-it-important (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

United Nations Environment Programme., ‘Climate Justice.’ Available at https://leap.unep.org/en/knowledge/glossary/climatejustice#:~:text=Climate%20justice%20is%20a%20term,environmental%20or%20physi cal%20in%20nature. (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

United Nations Environment Programme., ‘Climate Justice.’ Available at https://leap.unep.org/knowledge/glossary/climate-justice (Accessed on 28/11/2023).

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United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change., ‘Financing Fair, Inclusive and Just Transitions to a Sustainable Future.’ Available at https://unfccc.int/news/financing-fair-inclusive-and-just-transitions-to-asustainable-future (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change., ‘Leaving No One Behind in the Transition Towards a Low-Carbon Economy.’ Available at https://unfccc.int/news/leaving-no-one-behind-in-the-transition-towards-a-lowcarbon-economy (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

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United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change., ‘Views on Different Elements of the Work Programme on Just Transition Pathways Referred to in Paragraph 52 of Decision 1/CMA.4.’ https://www4.unfccc.int/sites/SubmissionsStaging/Documents/202309181045— ITF_SLOCAT_JTWP%20 submission.pdf (Accessed on 29/11/2023).

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Lawyers

Dr. Paul Ogendi AI Agenda for LSK Upcountry Representative

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Top Law Scholar and Practitioner Dr. Paul Ogendi, in race for LSK Upcountry Representative 2024-2026

Dear Esteemed Members of the Law Society of Kenya,

As your candidate for Up-Country Representative for the term 2024-2026, I am committed to advancing our legal profession and embracing the transformative potential of artificial intelligence (AI). Here are actionable steps to implement my agenda concerning AI in the legal sector:

1. Education and Awareness:

  • Organize workshops, webinars, and seminars to educate legal practitioners about AI technologies, their applications, and ethical considerations.
  • Collaborate with universities and legal institutions to integrate AI courses into legal education curricula.

2. Research and Development:

  • Establish a task force or committee focused on AI research within the Law Society.
  • Encourage legal professionals to explore AI tools for legal research, document review, and case prediction.
  • Foster partnerships with tech companies and research institutions to develop AI solutions tailored to legal needs.

3. Ethical Guidelines:

  • Develop clear guidelines for the responsible use of AI in legal practice.
  • Address concerns related to bias, transparency, and accountability in AI algorithms.
  • Promote adherence to professional ethics while leveraging AI tools.

4. Automating Routine Tasks:

  • Identify repetitive tasks (such as contract review, due diligence, and legal research) that can be automated using AI.
  • Invest in AI-powered tools to streamline administrative processes, allowing lawyers to focus on complex legal issues.

5. Legal Analytics and Predictive Modeling:

  • Encourage law firms and practitioners to adopt AI-driven analytics platforms.
  • Leverage predictive models to assess case outcomes, identify trends, and make informed decisions.

6. Client Services and Communication:

  • Implement AI chatbots for client inquiries, appointment scheduling, and basic legal advice.
  • Enhance communication channels through AI-driven tools to improve client satisfaction.

7. Data Security and Privacy:

  • Address data protection concerns by ensuring compliance with privacy laws.
  • Collaborate with cybersecurity experts to safeguard sensitive legal information processed by AI systems.

8. Collaboration and Networking:

  • Engage with other legal associations, tech communities, and government bodies to share best practices.
  • Attend AI conferences and forums to stay updated on advancements and network with industry experts.

Remember, our goal is not to replace lawyers but to empower them with AI tools that enhance efficiency, accuracy, and access to justice. Let us embrace this technological evolution while upholding the highest standards of legal practice.

Yours sincerely,

Dr. Paul Ogendi,
Up-Country Representative 2024-2026
Law Society of Kenya.

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