• She advised the young lawyers to ensure that their success in the profession is measured by how they keep fidelity to oath of office and not by the content of their bank accounts or their popularity.
• “You must make a living; but do not let this be the foundation of your ethos as an advocate. Take your time. Learn, grow, improve…money will come.”
Acting Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu has cautioned lawyers against being a conduit through which judges are compromised.
“Let no valid challenges to your ethical demeanor ever be raised. Be part of the change of the face of the legal profession and you shall transform the entire edifice of justice provision for all Kenyans,” said justice Mwilu during a swearing-in ceremony of new advocates on Tuesday.
She advised the young lawyers to ensure that their success in the profession is measured by how they keep fidelity to oath of office and not by the content of their bank accounts or their popularity.
“You must make a living; but do not let this be the foundation of your ethos as an advocate. Take your time. Learn, grow, improve…money will come.”
She added: :Discard this ‘pop’ attitude; this fast-food get rich quick instant gratification that is popular culture these days. It is ok to be ambitious, it is ok to have high expectations, but these must be measured with patience, honesty, hard work, and fortitude.”
Lawyers, she said, should always endeavour to do the right thing and address injustices in the society even where it is detrimental to their interest.
“Do the right thing. Do not be used as a tool for illegality, for political expediency, for financial dishonesty. Your integrity, you carry that with you always.”
Integrity should never be sacrificed for one to either fit in or maintain the status quo, she said.
“With the utmost civility becoming an advocate, you must not be afraid to speak to the facts, to strip away pretense and make others uncomfortable; provided that that sense of discomfort derives from the acknowledgement of the truth and that you are doing the right thing,” said the acting CJ.
She gave the young lawyers her own example, saying her path as a judge and a leader in the judiciary has been fraught with challenges.
However, she added, that should not dissuade anyone to fail to do the right thing and stay the course.