The National Legal Aid Service (NLAC) conducted a comprehensive legal awareness training in Garissa, aiming to educate the public about their entitlements and the services provided by NLAC to assist the indigent, vulnerable, and marginalized individuals in society.

In adherence to Article 48 of the Constitution, which emphasizes access to justice, state officials from the Office of the Attorney General, in collaboration with the Department of National Legal Aid Service, alongside local law enforcement represented by the area Officer Commanding Police Division (OCPD) and officers from the Haki na Sheria Initiative program, among other relevant authorities, convened to inform the public about the directive to provide free legal services to those in need.

NLAC offers a range of services including free legal advice, representation by pro bono advocates, assistance in drafting court documents, training on self-representation, facilitation of alternative justice mechanisms like mediation, and other legal services.

Mercy Gikunda, a state council, emphasized the importance of educating people, particularly from the northeastern region, on the limitations of Maslaha (customary law) and other alternative dispute resolution methods, ensuring they align with constitutional principles and moral standards, especially in cases like defilement.

Kisuya Caleb, an advocate, identified land disputes as a prevalent issue affecting residents, attributing the problem to the lack of title deeds among landowners. He proposed involving the National Lands Commission and other relevant authorities to address this challenge effectively.

Abdimalik Ismail, a Program Officer from the Haki na Sheria Initiative, stressed the significance of communities being knowledgeable about their rights and privileges enshrined in the Constitution. He highlighted that the lack of awareness often leads to instances of enforced disappearance, with security officers sometimes exploiting the community’s ignorance to harass individuals. Ismail also emphasized the importance of agencies like the Independent Policing Oversight Authority in safeguarding citizens’ rights.

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