The recent admission of Kenya’s Sports Cabinet Secretary to the bar has raised fundamental questions on the legality of the process she used to achieve as the critical body distances itself of any involvement.
Ordinarily, Advocates are admitted to the bar after rigorous process of training in University for bachelor’s degree in law and subsequently at the Kenya School of Law (KSL) and must pass the requisite examinations mandated by the relevant bodies. Sources at the Kenya School of Law (KSL) however states that Amina Chawahir Mohammed Jibril tried to undergo legal training at Karen-based Legal Training School in 1988 (32 years ago) but failed the exams.
Ms Mohammed who is currently in Geneva contesting for Director General, World Trade Organization went to Kakamega Township primary and later Butere Girls Secondary where she earned scholarship to study at the University of Kiev in Ukraine. Amina is said to have later obtained Post-Graduate Diploma in International Relations from University of Oxford in UK
Claims that the CS earned Masters in international law (LLM) proved farfetched as her knowledge and understanding of law was insufficient according to her classmates in Kenya School of Law in 1987 leading to her failure in exams and subsequent mis admission to the bar then. They say the CS was not in any way a lawyer as she was not conversant well with basic tenets and understanding of law
The bodies mandated to have substantiated Ms. Amina Mohammed’s admission and ought to have been involved seems not be aware at all. Mr. Jacob Gakeri, the chief executive officer of Council on Legal Education (CLE) says he is not aware of the process that led to exemption of Ms. Mohammed from usual process. Exemption usually is established by the constitutionally mandated bodies for professionals especially trained abroad but they must prove their expertise and knowledge in law and law practice. The major and most prominent exemption was that of Prof. Okoth Ogendo who according to the council, had established ‘gold-standard’ which future exemptions was to be done as his CV was impressive and is expertise in international law as unparallel.
Former Attorney General Githu Muigai, Chairman of Council on Legal Education (CLE) says that he watched the swearing in and admission of CS Mohammed like any other Kenyan and he was not a party of any committee of people who approved her credentials and admissions.Observers are drawing parallels between the ongoing battle of Director General of WTO in Geneva which CS Amina Mohammed is among the favorites with her admission as the timing is not coincidental at all and her hidden hand and influenced could have led to side-stepping the due process altogether.
CS Amina Mohammed’s academic credentials is in no doubt shrouded in secrecy but with her stake in the race for the international body like WTO, any discrepancy or controversy in her academic certificates may hurt her chances of success.