Kenyan lawyers join forces to return exiled Miguna

Kenyan lawyers join forces to return exiled Miguna

A section of prominent lawyers in Kenya are now joining forces to bring back the exiled lawyer cum politician Miguna Miguna.

Nelson Havi, the President of the Law Society of Kenya is among senior lawyers in the country that have said would return controversial Miguna back to Kenya.

Another lawyer is former Chief Justice Willy Mutunga who has said Miguna must return.

Willy Mutunga’s Plan to Bring Miguna Miguna Home Gains Momentum as Top Lawyer Joins

On Wednesday, Mutunga announced that he’ll soon be travelling to Canada to bring the exiled lawyer on 16 November 2021.

In his statement published by The Elephant on October 20, 2021, Dr. Mutunga condemned the government for disobeying court orders issued in his favour, adding that the vocal lawyer should be allowed back in the country unconditionally.

In solidarity with Dr Mutunga’s plan, Mr Havi announced that he was ready to accompany Dr Mutunga to Canada and bring back Miguna home.

“I am ready to accompany CJ Emeritus Dr Willy Mutunga to Canada to bring Miguna Miguna back home on November 16, 2021. The rule of law, respect for Court orders and the defense of the Constitution is the responsibility of all Kenyans in general and all leaders in particular,” Havi announced.

Exiled lawyer Miguna Miguna thanked Dr Mutunga and Havi as he called other Kenyans to join the journey.

“Former CJ Willy Mutunga: Thank you for the decision to travel to Canada and accompany me home on November 16. It’s 1,357 days (3 years, 8 months, and 18 days) since I was forcefully exiled. We need genuine freedom. Let them remove the RED ALERTS! I’m ready,” Dr Miguna said while responding to the former CJ. 

“I have taken this extraordinary step for two fundamental reasons. The first is because of the continued, flagrant and reprehensible defiance of the Government of Kenya, its agencies and senior officials, against the numerous valid court orders in favour of Mr Miguna,” said Mutunga.

In January 2020, Miguna was barred from flights by two European airlines after the Kenyan government issued a “Red Notice”. Shortly before, the governemnt had said he would be allowed back into the country.

Both Lufthansa and Air France denied Miguna Miguna the right to travel to Kenya on their flights, with the latter removing him from Flight AFO814 that was scheduled to fly from Roissy-Charles De Gaulle Airport in France to Nairobi.

“In the case of this passenger, they [Kenyan authorities] requested that Lufthansa deny boarding,” Lufthansa said in response to a question by a Kenyan on Twitter DM.

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Miguna Miguna, a 58-year-old Kenyan-Canadian lawyer, was deported by the Kenyan governemnt on March 26, 2018, just two months after he and other lawyers swore in opposition leader Raila Odinga as the “People’s President” following the two 2017 presidential elections.

This was Miguna’s second exile. He fled the country in 1987 after being detained for his activities as a student leader.

Dual Citizenship

The subject of Miguna’s citizenship first came up in 2010; Kenyan law at the time did not recognise dual citizenship, and President Kibaki’s supporters insisted he needed a work permit to work in the country.

“While Mr Miguna Miguna was born in Kenya, he has since become a citizen of Canada. Like all other expatriates working in the country, our laws require that Mr Miguna apply for and obtain the relevant permits to live and work in Kenya,” members of the then ruling party wrote in a letter at the time.

After a fallout during the 2013 elections, where Miguna supported Kenyatta’s candidacy, he and Odinga closed ranks again in 2017. Miguna was a candidate for governor of Nairobi, and was renowned for being abrasive, and brutally honest, during debates and media interviews.

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Lawrence Baraza is a prolific writer with competencies in Digital Media, Print, and Broadcast. Baraza is also a Communication Practitioner currently spearheading Digital content on Metropol TV's Digital Desk.

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