Abbas A. Esmail

Abbas A. Esmail

Partner | ALN Kenya | Anjarwalla & Khanna

Physical Address:

ALN House, Eldama Ravine Close, Off Eldama Ravine Road, Westlands

Postal Address:

PO Box 200-00606, Sarit Centre, Nairobi, Kenya


+254 (0) 20 364 0000

Email Address:

  1. Background

    Abbas is a Partner in the firm’s Dispute Resolution department. His practice specialises in criminal and commercial litigation as well as regulatory enforcement disputes, with a focus on anti-corruption and economic crime, white collar crime, cyber-crime and competition law.  He has significant experience handling a wide range of high-profile litigations which include tax disputes, disputes concerning land and environment, fraud, corruption, shareholder disputes and constitutional and civil rights litigation.  Before joining A&K, he was previously with the firm Kilukumi & Co. Advocates.

  2. Professional Membership
    • Law Society of Kenya 
  3. Professional Qualifications

    2010 – 2011: Kenya School of Law, Diploma in Law

    2005 – 2009: LL.B (Hons) Second Class (Upper Division) University of Nairobi

    2000 – 2003: Allidina Visram High School, Mombasa 

  4. Career Summary

    Jul 2021 – Date: Partner, Anjarwalla & Khanna, Nairobi

    Jul 2017 – Jun 2021: Senior Associate, Anjarwalla & Khanna, Nairobi

    Mar  2016 – Jul 2017: Principal Associate, Anjarwalla & Khanna, Nairobi

    2011 – Mar 2016: Kilukumi & Co. Advocates, Nairobi

    2004 – 2005: Purchasing Manager, Civicon Uganda Limited 

  5. Top Matters
    • Acting for Telkom Kenya and Airtel Networks Kenya in the first merger review application to be filed before the Competition Tribunal relating to a conditional approval of a proposed merger by the Competition Authority of Kenya.
    • Acting for Safepak in relation to successfully resisting a claim alleging historical land injustices by a local Kenyan community.
    • Acting for Varian Medical Systems International AG in relation to a tender review application before the Public Procurement Administrative Review Board.
    • Acting for a high net worth client in matrimonial proceedings which include child custody and maintenance, divorce and matrimonial property proceedings filed in various courts.
    • Acting for a client in relation to a cross-border child abduction case and return of minor children to Kenya.
    • Acting for Kenya Airways, including securing injunctions in its favour, in relation to high profile strike actions commenced by its employees through the Kenya Aviation Workers Union protesting the alleged mismanagement of the aviation sector in Kenya and opposing a proposed takeover by Kenya Airways over the running and management of Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, including a strike action intended to prevent the airline’s maiden flight to New York.
    • Acting for Style Industries, a local subsidiary of Indian consumer products company Godrej, in relation to a criminal antitrust investigation by the Competition Authority of Kenya, including sucessfully obtaining an injunction against enforcement on abuse of process grounds.
    • Acting for TEAMS, a joint venture comprising the Government of Kenya and major telcos operating in Kenya, in relation to a tax dispute with the Kenya Revenue Authority over the laying of an undersea fibre optic cable between Kenya and UAE; including successfully obtaining an injunction against enforcement action to recover the taxes.
    • Acting for Actis (a CDC offshoot) and GC Retail in relation to a dispute with Nakumatt, formerly the largest supermarket chain in East Africa, in relation to regaining possession of leased premises in insolvency proceedings declared by the government to be of public importance. Nakumatt was an anchor tenant in Actis’ mixed use development project known as Garden City which has been recognised by the Government of Kenya as a Vision 2030 flagship project.
    • Acting for East African Exploration Kenya, a local subsidiary of Afren (In Administration), an international oil exploration company formerly listed on the London Stock Echange, in a civil case brought by a Seismic Data provider, BGP Kenya for breach of contract for failure to pay a contractual sum due to BGP Kenya.
    • Acting for and advising GAPCO Kenya in relation to an employment claim instituted by its employees in the Employment and Labour Relations Court to stop the sale of the shareholding in GAPCO.
    • Drafting Anti-Money Laundering legislation and other payment systems legislation for Somaliland including training on the draft legislation to senior government officials and other key stakeholders.


    Top Matters (Before joining A&K)

    • Acting for the former Deputy Chief Justice, Hon. (Lady) Justice Kalpana H. Rawal at the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court in challenging the Judicial Service Commission’s decision to peg the retirement age of all judges at the age of seventy years irrespective of their date of appointment.
    • Acting for Hon. Christopher N. Murungaru, former Minister for Internal Security, against John Githongo in a defamation suit against Mr. Githongo in relation to the infamous Anglo Leasing contracts entered into by the Government of Kenya, inluding a successful application for the exclusion of inappropraitely obtained evidence.
    • Acting for Hon. David Mwiraria, former Minister for Finance, in the High Court of Kenya in connection with the quashing of warrants of arrest issued by the Chief Magistrates Court against Hon. Mwiraria to compel his attendance in court to take plea in the high profile Anglo-Leasing criminal prosecution.
    • Acting for Dr. Silas M. Simiyu, former Managing Director of the Geothermal Development Company, in an anti-corruption case in connection with the successful application for revision of cash bail terms from the High Court.

23 / 69