“Proficiency in technology, confidence, and a large pool of knowledge base and network are the Millennials’ greatest strength.”– Wycklife Odhiambo Oyoo
Wycklife Odhiambo Oyoo is an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Law from Moi University and a Postgraduate Diploma in Law from the Kenya School of Law. He is an Associate in the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Department at Kaplan & Stratton Advocates. His main area of practice is civil and commercial litigation involving complex commercial disputes, debt collection, employment law, tax law, land law and Intellectual property disputes among others. He also handles criminal litigation matters and disputes before various specialized tribunals. In 2020 and 2021, Wycklife was the 2ndRunner Up of the Young Lawyer of the Year award by the Nairobi Legal Awards.
We have engaged Wycklife in this Millennial edition to learn more from him.
1. What Makes Legal Practice Exciting for Wycklife?
The dynamism and spontaneous nature of practice makes law exciting for Wycklife. He practises majorly in litigation and, more often than not, he has to deal with the slyness of the opposing counsel, the unpredictability of the witness, and the inquisitiveness of the Judicial Officer. These simply mean he must possess the ability to think on his feet, always.
2. What is Wycklife’s Philosophy of Impacting the Nation through the Practice of the Law?
Wycklife’s philosophy is that the practice of law impacts the nation because law is for the public good. In this respect, he believes that public law is as important as private law. In Kenya, especially since the promulgation of the Constitution, he notes that lawyers have contributed a great deal in arguing cases that have far-reaching impacts on Kenya’s public life. An example is the recent BBI Judgment which is now headed to the Supreme Court which he cites.
For Wycliffe, the practice of law is equally important in the private law realm, and Kenya has made great strides in enacting legislation to regulate and guide private engagements between parties. As an example, the Employment Court and the Land Court are specialised courts specifically tasked with dealing with labour and land matters respectively. He understands that Lawyers who practice in other areas such as corporate law, real estate, intellectual property among others similarly structure companies, help in the transfer of assets, registration of intellectual property rights among other things. In short, Wycklife believes that lawyers are at the very heart of nation-building.
3. What is the Next Big Thing He is Working On?
Wycklife is currently working on a paper on the place of customary law marriages in Kenya’s legal system. Through this paper, he seeks to analyse the efficacy and the rationale behind the requirement for registration of customary law marriages and to place into context the history and treatment of customary law marriages, and the changes occasioned by the Marriage Act 2014 on this marriage regime in Kenya.
4. What Does He Consider the Millennials’ Greatest Strength?
In his opinion, proficiency in technology, confidence, and a large pool of knowledge base and network are the Millennials’ greatest strength.
5. Who Inspires Wycklife and What is He Currently Reading?
He is inspired by Raila Odinga’s audacity to attempt, more than four times to have a stab at the Presidency, fail, but always get the drive and resolve to make another push for it. He is currently reading Imbolo Mbue’s ‘How Beautiful We Were’, a story about a West-African village destroyed by an oil company from the Americas and the struggle by the villagers to rescue their children who are dying daily from the pollution caused by the oil explorers. Deeply intriguing and unsettling, especially on the role of African Governments in selling their populace to western powers and interests.
The PALM considers Wycklife Odhiambo Oyoo a legal millennial who has shown exceptional radiance in the field of legal practice.
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Click here to read our previous millennial, Sebastian La Hausse de Lalouvière.
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