James Orengo The One Lawyer Uhuru, Raila and Kibaki Always Hire for Hot Cases

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One Kenyan lawyer on Friday made history as...

The Kenyan political scene has often faced criticism for being too adversarial, but hardly will you find local politics being described as boring.

For James Aggrey Bob Orengo, his has been a remarkable journey that has placed him at the heart of local politics, both as a politician and as a lawyer.

On Friday, Orengo made history as the first African lawyer to represent a client who succeeded in nullifying a Presidential election.

play James Orengo in court (Twitter)


But apart from representing Raila Odinga, Orengo is perhaps the only lawyer who has appeared in sensitive political cases for nearly every Kenyan leader.

In the 1990s, the current Siaya Senator was already a respected social justice activist and would later serve as Mwai Kibaki's trusted lawyer.

After DP's candidate lost in the 1997 election, Orengo was in the lead team that represented Kibaki.

The case was, however, thrown out under the excuse that the petitioners did not physically serve court papers to President Daniel Arap Moi.

Less than a decade later, and after his former client Mwai Kibaki had become President, Orengo was back to the trenches representing Opposition leader Uhuru Kenyatta.

The shrewd lawyer acted for Kenyatta and the then KANU secretary General William Ruto in a number of cases where the NARC government attempted to muzzle the Opposition party.

play James Orengo (left) with Raila Odinga (Standard)


Away from politics, the Siaya legislator currently holds the record for the longest sitting parliamentarian.

He first entered Parliament as Ugenya MP in 1980 where he served for one term. He would later recapture the set in 1992, 1997 and 2007 before moving to the senate in 2013.

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