, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 14 – The High Court has extended orders barring the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) from summoning Attorney General Githu Muigai to explain why a Certificate of Dishonour should not be issued against him.
A three-judge bench restrained the lawyers umbrella body from summoning Muigai to explain why he advised the government to pay two Anglo-Leasing firms Sh1.4 billion.
Justices Weldon Korir, George Odunga and Mumbi Ngugi said the orders will remain in force until July 25 when the application by the governments’ chief legal advisor will commence.
Consequently, the LSK was given up to Thursday this week to file its response to the AG’s petition.
The LSK had earlier objected to the three judges handling the petition arguing that no constitutional issues have been raised.
But the court agreed with the AG’s lawyer Waweru Gatonye’s view, that it is not for the LSK to say whether the petition raises Constitutional issues or not. LSK lawyer Ahmednasir Abdullahi had argued that the matter should not be to be heard by a bench ‘since it has no substance and is only supported by newspaper cuttings’.
In the urgent application, the AG says by law and practice his office performs specified functions independently and without supervision and control of any person or authority.
He states that principal client of the AG is the government of Kenya and is bound by rules that govern the relationship as between the advocate and client.
The LSK on June 16 wrote to the AG to show cause why a Notice of Dishonour should not be issued against him.
The lawyers claim the AG abandoned the bribery and corruption defence and instead entered into consent to pay Universal Satspace US$7.6 million.
The AG is also accused of withdrawing instructions from foreign advocates in December 2013 and appointed the Solicitor General to take over the cases knowing he cannot practice in England.
But according to the AG, the LSK does not have any jurisdiction to issue such notice or issue certificate which in any case is not known in law.
He therefore sought orders stopping the LSK on grounds that it has a clear intention to proceed with their machinations through unlawful and without jurisdiction to issue the notice intended to inflict great damage to the name, reputation and Office of the Attorney General of Kenya.