Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Pray, what is amicus curiae?

It has been a week where every parent now wants their child to be a lawyer.
When you watch Ahmednassir Abdullahi, George Oraro, Kethi Kilonzo and Fred Ngatia argue their cases, you realise that there are some brilliant minds out there.
Until Attorney General Muigai, in so many words tried to send a Friend Request to the Supreme Court, not many knew what in God’s green earth Amicus Curiae is. He wanted to be a friend of the court and they did agree to his request. Lawyers and their love of jargon!
Some have even started using them in their everyday lingo using Amicus Curiae to mean “Friends with benefits.”
Thing is, most of us have only seen the so called “world of the law” on our pirated copies of American Court Dramas. We love it when a lawyer wins every case.
We think that every lawyer is Harvey Specter, Alan Shore, Will Gardner and the likes. Well, many are but what many expected, I suspect, was a flurry of “Objections your honour, argumentative” to which the judge would responds with a “sustained” or “overruled”.
We expected the lawyers to leave their desks and walk across the court offering some deep lines that would make any poet blush.
We expected Kethi to interrupt Ahmednassir whenever he tried to argue his case or whenever the Chief Justice overruled him (Kethi), allowing Ahmednassir to continue.
We got none of that. What we got was nowhere near that… until the CJ started ordering senior counsels to buy their peers lunch.
Then I was like: they can do that? Wow!
I wanted to be Amicus Curiae just for the free meals because let’s be honest, they were not going to some kiosk for warm soda and a half loaf like we did in school.  The trauma! You can’t take these learned friends to a place that has less than three stars.
But speaking of kiosks, can Kenyan schools be sued for that warm-soda-and-half-loaf stunt?
Seriously, wasn’t that like the worst thing ever? And to embarrass us more, they had us all sit under a tree and shut up. In fact, throw the parents into that suit of shame; they let their kids be traumatised.
Here’s the math; you’d be travelling for a Drama Festivals on a Thursday, and the sodas were bought — you guessed it — on the Sunday. That’s five days worth of hot staffroom-stored sodas, which place had teachers and paperwork packed like sardines.
By the time Thursday rolled in, you could successfully boil an egg in that soda. Add the actually journey to the festival and the sodas would be shaken to a foam. The loaf of bread would be fresh but half a bread and a Coke? That would fill up your stomach for three days straight, but there was nothing healthy or enjoyable about it.
But I, very lengthily, digress.
What other powers does Mutunga have? Can he, for instance, order Ngatia to buy pints for his learned friends? or Oraro to take his peers to Naivasha for the Easter weekend after the verdict is delivered tomorrow?
Maybe even order Kethi to pay someone else’s rent for a month.
But I dream…
They say the law is an ass. What they don’t say is what a beautiful ass it is. When you are ever the guy on the receiving end of lunch or drinks thanks to the CJ, life could be pretty amazing.
Our lawyers are brilliant and although not many know what they are talking about, you can tell they belong there. You meet some guy who’s been watching the proceedings all day and ask him for an update and he’ll give you the “Wanaongea tu” line.
But what is it about watching lawyers do their thing that makes Kenyans think they can do it better? Before and during the elections, the same people were political analysts. Never mind that they were ignorant about the “50%” plus “One” rule (no, it wasn’t 51%). Thanks to social media, however, they could air their ignorance.
Now everyone is trying to explain the electoral process to someone else and it is hilarious watching them try to poke holes in people like Oraro’s evidence. They — the ignoramus — get it so wrong, they should be arrested for being dumb.
Now, about that condom ad. Are we still talking about that?
Seriously? Kenyan men, when you cheat, who exactly do you think you’re cheating with?
Here’s a hint, women!!
The problem is, now every cheating man doubts his wife but cannot ask because, well, where is the evidence?
Be grateful that if your partner cheats (and I believe married people should be faithful to each other till death) at least they use protection because statistics show that majority of new infections happen in marriage.
Shouldn’t that be obvious?
But what do I know, I am single.
Twitter: @Mwanikih

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