The, Grand Mullah’ will now lead the most coveted position of Lawyers in Kenya, having been elected by peers earlier today. Ahmednasir Abdullahi was elected Chairman of the Senior Counsels Committee.
Being a senior Counsel is prestigious and comes with its privileges. Since its inception in 2003, there are only 23 of the over 16,000 lawyers admitted to the bar that have earned the status. The title has similar privileges, rank and prestige of the Queens Counsel (QC) in the UK.
One route that is visible of the 23 is that it has all previous chairs of the Law Society of Kenya. Others who have also been conferred by the positions they have held are Attorney General, Director of Public Prosecutions and the Solicitor General. The Advocates Act explains that “the Attorney-General, the, Senior Counsel or Queen’s Counsel according to the date of their appointment as such, the chairman and the vice-chairman (if not a Senior Counsel) of the Society shall, in that order, take precedence of advocates who, inter se, shall take precedence according to the date upon which they signed their names on the Roll.”
To be appointed as one, a committee that comprises the Attorney-General, a Court of Appeal judge, a High Court judge, three Senior Counsel and four advocates vets the applicant. Once the agree on the candidates, the list is sent to the Chief Justice. The Chief Justice will then send the names to the President to confer the title to them, which are then gazetted.
Senior Counsel met today when a formal structure of Senior Counsel Committee of @lawsocietykenya was set up. Ahmednasir Abdullahi SC was elected Chair of the Committee and of the Committee on Senior Counsel. Other elected members of Senior Counsel Committee are Nzamba Kitonga SC, pic.twitter.com/xUBoU8w6Mq
— Nelson Havi (@NelsonHavi) May 20, 2020
Last year, 60 lawyers, among them former Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka and former Justice minister Martha Karua, have applied to join the exclusive club of Senior Counsel. However, the process was scrapped.
Here are the Senior Counsels in Kenya.
He is a founding partner of Ahmednasir, Abdikadir & Company Advocates
The abrasive lawyer has served as the chair of the Law Society of Kenya and was also the lawyers’ representative to the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) after the Constitution was promulgated in 2010. It is during his tenure that they recruited and inaugurated Kenya’s first Supreme Court.