By Wuod Hellena
If you’re asked to name top criminal lawyers in the country and you don’t fling Cliff Ombeta into the mix, think again boss; you aren’t counting criminal lawyers, maybe you’re counting your village witches. I should explain.
Ombeta is not your ordinary criminal lawyer. The guy is super good and knows the rules of the game. He’s the only guy in this country who deems criminals innocent until they’re proven guilty. The rest of us will pass a guilty verdict on you until proven otherwise. One more thingy, you don’t hire Cliff if you’re as white as cotton. No – if you’re innocent you grab any member of the bar.
You only knock on Ombeta’s door if you did it – you planted a dagger into the throat of that son of a bitch, or you emptied your magazine on the head of that fool you found in your bed screwing your wife or you are hiding public money in your pillows; you know your goose is cooked and thus want a renowned devil’s advocate to save your skin.
If you’re a criminal in this country, whether you’re a thug emptying public purse or or just a hustler eking out a living with a gun tucked on your waist, and you don’t have Cliff on your speed dial, you’re cooked! In being the devil’s advocate, Cliff makes money like shiiiieet! Apart from corruption, representing crooks is the second highest paying job in Kenya.
You don’t contact Ombeta if you’re as poor as my village drunk who has been wearing one long trousers since I was born. When it gets torn and he visits a tailor, he will undress and remain with the undie (which was ravaged in World War I) and get it repaired. Cliff knows how to poke holes in prosecution’s case and when you’re found guilty – like it happens so often – he is very good at pleading with the judge to be human and hand you a lesser sentence.
So don’t berate him for taking up the governor’s case. As I said earlier, you don’t knock on Cliff’s door if you have not been accused or adversely mentioned in a serious criminal investigation. If you’re innocent you look for senior counsel James Orengo Nyatieng’. you only give Cliff a call if your hands are marinated in blood. In short, Cliff is the Orengo of the underworld. Uwinjo?