Every morning, before his inevitably busy day begins, Edward sits in silence for thirty minutes. He spends his time reading, reflecting, preparing for his day in prayer. But when the thirty minutes are up, that’s his cue to rush out the door to a place he might as well deem his second home: the courtroom. He’s the voice for the voiceless.
Edward Mbanya is an IJM attorney. He fights for the poor and powerless by prosecuting those in power who abuse it.
You might remember Edward as the man who helped put Nahashon Mutua behind bars—the first ever police officer of his rank to be convicted of murder and actually sentenced for it.
But Edward wasn’t always this kind of attorney. In fact, more often than not, he found himself working for the other side.
“I came across a lot of corruption and I found that the system had been changed so that whatever I did in my job, [it] did not benefit the majority who were poor, but a few wealthy individuals,” Edward said.
“Having worked for the wealthy all my working life, I felt I needed to do something for the poor even if it was a few poor people.”
As he was searching for jobs, he discovered that “something” in a listing: an open IJM position.
At first he didn’t want to apply. It was his wife’s encouragement that led him to turn in his application. But he’s grateful he listened.
It turns out, God knew exactly what he was doing when he brought Edward to IJM. He soon found his calling defending IJM clients and prosecuting police who abused their power. And the best part? It worked.
Edward was seeing firsthand the justice system transform. No longer was the system fixed to land in favor of the wealthy—now the poor were finally seeing the system work for them too.
The secret sauce to Edward’s success? It wasn’t about the quantity of cases he took on. It all came down to quality.
“We seek justice for the poor, and not to make more money for the rich and powerful… We do small numbers of strategic cases very well that will have a maximum effect in transforming the justice system to work for the poor.”
He gets to focus on a few cases at a time, ensuring he represents his clients well so that these cases can influence a new justice system that works for everyone.
For Edward, he’s confirmed that the work he does for IJM is God’s work, and he feels he’s done his work well each time he sees the joy on his clients’ faces when they hear good news.
“My faith in God has renewed my strength and resolve to fight and pursue justice for the poor… The most fulfilling aspect of my job is that I get the privilege to see the difference we make in these people’s lives because we walk the journey to seek justice together with our clients.”
There was a time where Edward wasn’t sure justice for the poor was possible. But now, he doesn’t just believe it’s possible. He’s seen it. And he fights hard so that each client can see it too.
Churches like yours are what make Edward’s work in bringing justice to the poor possible. Edward couldn’t fight fearlessly for our clients without people like you behind him every step of the way. Our staff need you.
As we fight together to protect the poor from violence, will you be a source of encouragement to our staff like Edward? Write uplifting letters and commit to pray for our staff while they make justice for the poor unstoppable. Email churches@IJM.org to start writing your letters today. They can’t wait to hear from you