The Law Society of Kenya (LSK) has revised its dress code for practicing advocates of the High Court. Female lawyers have now been banned from wearing revealing clothes during court sessions. This includes short skirts and sleeveless shirts.
LSK chairman Eric Mutua said that wearing of culottes, shorts and jeans is not allowed. Skirts should be of dark colours and of at least knee length. Blouses on the other hand must be black, charcoal, grey, navy blue or similar colours and may be printed materials of a combination of the colours together with cream and white.
As a possible consolation, female lawyers can now wear trouser suits and braid their hair when appearing before Judges, Magistrates and Tribunals. However, “The braids should not be intertwined with coloured threads or flamboyant so as to bring the legal profession into disrepute,” Mutua said.
Sandals or any other shoes that expose the toes are strictly forbidden in a court room, unless when suffering from a foot condition. Furthermore, they must be black, grey, navy blue or brown, and this applies to both male and female.
Male advocates must now at all times while in court have a neck tie and should not remove coats without permission of the presiding judge.
Any advocate who appears in a court dressed contrary to the new dress code commits a professional misconduct. “All manner of flamboyance and garishness must be avoided at all costs…advocates must not appear untidy or unkempt,” Mutua said.