Justice Maureen Odera of the High Court in Nairobi has set the ruling for a case in which Nairobi lawyer Abib Zam Zam Abdi has been sued for failing to honour a Ksh 21 million agreement for March 13, 2020.
Businessman Salim Ali Sheikh has sued lawyer Abib Zam Zam Abdi of Abid & Associates Advocates for reneging on an irrevocable undertaking to remit Ksh21 million for professional services he had provided to Halal Meat Products Ltd.
The plaintiff claims that on November 30, 2018, he entered into an agreement with the lawyer to undertake professional services for Halal Meat Products Ltd and on successful completion be paid Ksh21 million.
During submissions before Justice Odera, lawyer Duncan Okatch for the plaintiff said while his client discharged his responsibilities as agreed the defendant did not honour their agreement.
The plaintiff had been contracted by Halal Meat Products Ltd to help process pending compensation payment from the National Land Commission (NLC) which he did.
Lawyer Okatch told the court that although NLC paid Halal Meat Products Ltd Ksh104 million in compensation, lawyer Abib Zam Zam Abdi or Abid & Associates Advocates did not remit the agreed Ksh21 million to his client.
Mr Okatch said after NLC paid Halal Meat Products Ltd the defendant on January 29, 2019 agreed to pay his client Ksh6 million through a Real-Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) transfer via First Community Bank.
He said this RTGs transaction was witnessed by an advocate of the High Court but after two days, the defendant cancelled the RTGs payment. “The transaction was mysteriously reversed even after the deduction of the money from the defendant’s account,” he said.
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Mr Okatch argued that reasons given by the defendant for not honouring the agreement with his client were misleading as the irrevocable undertaking was between the lawyer and the plaintiff. He said courts have a duty to exercise punitive and disciplinary powers over advocates to ensure compliance of legal undertakings.
However, the defendant’s lawyer argued that the relationship between the plaintiff and the defendant were highly contested and the plaintiff could not justify the work he did to warrant the payment of Ksh21 million.
The lawyer said the Ksh6 million that was allegedly paid to the plaintiff and later reversed was for a different undertaking.
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