Kenya is embarking on a legislative process to allow Rwandan and Burundian advocates to practice on its territory.
In 2021, Rwandan and Burundian advocates were locked out from practising in Kenya, a move that came under scrutiny from the East African region.
The Kenyan parliament is now pushing for the approval of the Advocates (Amendment) Bill, a legislation that seeks to allow the citizens of Burundi and Rwanda to be eligible for admission as an advocate in Kenya, just like their counterparts from Tanzania and Uganda.
The objective of the bill is to amend the Advocates Act, to allow the citizens of Burundi and Rwanda to be eligible for admission as advocates to the high court of Kenya, subject to them having the relevant professional and academic qualifications.
The bill says that the fact that the two countries are members of the East African Community, they should be accorded equal treatment as Ugandans and Tanzanians.
This is the third time the Kenyan Parliament is pushing for the amendment of the bill to allow the advocates from the two countries practice in Kenya.
The East African Law Society (EALS) was vocally critical of Kenya for locking out Rwandan and Burundian lawyers. The EALS’s legal instruments provide, among others, for the removal of restrictions on movement of labour services as well as committing member states to mutual recognition of academic and professional qualifications (including legal qualifications).