Jotham Okome Arwa stands out as the only Managing Partner of a Kenyan Top-tier Law Firm who also doubles as a leading law intellectual. He is roundly revered in the legal circles as one of the most brilliant and leading legal minds in country and as an advocate who has contributed immensely in shaping jurisprudence and practice of law in Kenya both as a practitioner and law lecturer. Gifted with a sharp, analytical mind, Arwa is a formidable lawyer and an inspiring example for many budding advocates.
Jotham Okome Arwa is the Managing Partner and Head of Legal Consultancy and Commercial Law Department at Rachier & Amollo Advocates LLP, admittedly one of Kenya’s most respected and outstanding litigation law firms in Kenya specializing in corporate law, commercial law, litigation construction law, property law, conveyancing, labour law and aviation law, among others. The firm is home to some of the most sought after legal heavyweights in Kenya including Ambrose D.O. Rachier, Hon Otiende Amollo, SC, Francis Olalo, Stephen Ligunya, Alvin Rachier and Arwa himself, among others.
Jotham Arwa leads a legal team of over 20 lawyers at Rachier & Amollo Advocates which includes 6 partners, over 10 associates and a handful of legal consultants, pupils and paralegals. He has 23 years’ post-admission legal experience and over the years has successfully handled complex and high value legal matters and transactions on behalf of diverse corporate and private clients. He has special interest in corporate commercial law, banking, finance and securities law, taxation and public finance management law and constitutional and human rights law.
Senior Law Lecturer and Seasoned Legal Consultant
Jotham Okome Arwa is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Law, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. He has also taught law at various universities and institutions in Kenya including University of Nairobi (Medical Law), Kenya School of Monetary Studies (Finance and Banking Law) and Kenya School of Law. He has also undertaken human rights training for senior managers of the Prison Department and Kenya National Commission on Human Rights on the reporting mechanisms under the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights.
In addition to legal practice and teaching law, Arwa is a well-respected and seasoned legal consultant and has handled numerous complex legal consultancy assignments in various aspects of law and gained wealth of experience legal and regulatory frameworks and legislative drafting. Indeed, as head of Legal Consultancy at Rachier & Amollo Advocates, Arwa and his team have handled many legal reform assignments which have left indelible mark in the legal and economic landscape in Kenya, East Africa and beyond.
In the area of financial and securities law, Arwa has consulted for the Capital Markets Authority in a consultancy involving the evaluation of the Capital Markets Legal Regime in Kenya and making recommendations on the Emerging Trends in Financial Services Law and their implications on the future capital markets in Kenya. Arwa also led the legal consultancy team retained to advise on the privatization of Kenya Re-Insurance Corporation culminating in the Initial Public Offer (IPO) of Kenya Re.
In insurance law, Arwa led Rachier & Amollo team in undertaking a legal consultancy for the Government of Kenya to review the legal and regulatory framework governing the Insurance Industry with a view to modernizing all insurance related statutes and aligning the same with the international best practices. He also reviewed the legislative and procedural framework for the establishment and proper functioning of insurance policyholder compensation fund. The eventual output was a Draft Insurance (Amendment) Bill which was enacted into law.
In the medical and human rights sphere, Arwa consulted for the Embassy of Belgium in evaluating the current observance status of the ethical as well as the medico-legal issues relating to HIV/AIDS in Kenya and make recommendations for improvement of legal framework for the fight against HIV/AIDS in Kenya. He also consulted for Federation of Kenya Employers on the development of appropriate guidelines in the area of Human Rights in the workplace and guidelines for use by employers in treatment of persons infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS in the workplace.
Tribunal Chair, Director, Author and Scholar
Due to his standing as a legal authority in legal education, human rights and medical ethics and commercial law, Arwa has served as Director in various institutions including: The Kenya International Freight and Warehousing Association, Kenya Legal and Ethical Issues Network (KELIN) and the Legal Education Forum. Previously, he served as a Member of the National Steering Committee on Fast-tracking HIV Response among Adolescents and Youth appointed by the Cabinet Secretary for Health. Currently, Arwa is the Chairman of the HIV and Aids Tribunal of Kenya.
Arwa’s teaching and consultancy assignments have given him an edge in legal practice especially in medical-legal area and in handling finance and banking transactions and deals. He has also written several books and manuals in these area which serve as guides for other legal practitioners. These include HIV/Aids and Law, Human Rights in the Workplace (Training Manual authored for Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE) and Human Rights and HIV/AIDS (Training Manual for University of Nairobi, Faculty of Medicine).
Arwa has also authored numerous papers and articles on law and practice in the areas of Financial Services Law, Digital Banking, Banking Law, Access to Justice, Corporate Law, Bankruptcy and Insolvency Law and Employment law. His articles have been submitted for publication in peer-reviewed law journals including Harvard Law Journal, University of Nairobi Law Journal, Law Democracy and Development (LLD) Journal of University of Western Cape, JKUAT Law Journal, Lex Mundi World Reports and Commonwealth Legal Education Journal. Arwa has also presented papers in numerous Conferences and forums.
Arwa holds a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) Degree and Masters of Laws (LLM) Degree from University of Nairobi and a post graduate diploma in law from Kenya School of Law. His LLM Thesis research was on Taxation and Development in a Global Economy. Currently, he is studying for his Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) Degree in Law. These qualifications have enabled Arwa to maintain a global perspective tempered with local understandings in solving the multifaceted legal problems of his clients who include individuals, government agencies, multinational corporations, Non-governmental organizations, local and foreign Governments.