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Five interesting things about lawyer Danstan Omari

Nairobi lawyer Danstan Omari is household name given that may of his cases involve high-profile clients. Mr Omari’s reputation often precedes him, with some of the notable clients he has represented in the past reading like a list of the who is who in Kenya.

Among his past clients is President William Ruto, former Chief Justice David Maraga, former Meru Senator Mithika Linturi, Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza, former IEBC vice chair Juliana Cherera and now former Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i.

He has even represented women who accuse their baby daddies of absconding from their duties. Here are five key things about this accomplished lawyer:

His guardian and principal switched his university selection – In 1985 when it came to selecting his degree courses, Mr Omari chose law in all the entries but the school’s principal and guardian changed them to a Bachelor of Education degree.

They believed that from the school’s performance history, no one had ever been admitted to study law.

When the results were out, he was confident that he would study because he had qualified. To his surprise, he received an offer letter indicating that he had been selected to study Bachelor of Education.

He is a trained teacher – After finishing his A-levels, Mr Omari joined Kenyatta University to pursue a teaching course, despite wanting to pursue law. He accepted his fate and became a teacher before he eventually quit to pursue law.

“I graduated from Kenyatta University in 1990. I wasn’t prepared to teach so I remained in Nairobi. My intention was to look for money to go to India and study law,” Omari said in a previous interview.

As s teacher, he taught at Kiabonyoru Secondary School in Nyamira and Muthurwa Secondary School in Kiambu.

He was interdicted as a teacher – Having been posted to a school which he says was in a very remote location, Mr Omari, who arrived at the said school at midnight told the principal, the only teacher who was in the school that he would not be reporting there.

Early the next day, Mr Omari went back to Nairobi and to the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) where he informed the commission’s boss that he would not be reporting to the school.

“He told me that I would be interdicted to which I did not object.”

He pursued law when in his 40s – They say life begins at 40 and if Mr Omari is used as an example, then the saying is valid. The renowned lawyer studied law after leaving his previous job in his prime as a senior high school teacher.

In January 2009, he enrolled in the Kenya School of Law, and around June same year, the University of Nairobi advertised for Masters programmes and he applied. In November 2011, Mr Omari was admitted to the bar as an advocate and graduated with Masters Degree in December same year.

He funded his wife’s university education while still dating her – Talk of being a gentleman. Mr Omari paid up his wife’s university fees from the second semester of the first year till when she cleared. At the time they were still courting.

Although they had agreed on not having children yet so that the money Mr Omari got from his teaching career could meet their needs, he admits that the pressure mounted every day.

“Many were fearing that she would elope once she cleared her university education,” he said.

When she graduated, she could not get a job due to the course she had pursued. Mr Omari encouraged her to go for her Master’s degree which he also funded.