Ocampo tells Kenyans he is on the way

May 5, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 5 – International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo has invited those with information regarding the post election violence to share it with him during his visit to the country which starts this Saturday.

According to the ICC website, even those who think they are suspects are free to give their views to the Prosecutor.

“All of those who wish to share with the Prosecutor their views and/or information on the post-election violence will have a chance to do so, including those who have reasons to believe they may be subject to investigations or prosecution,” the website indicated.

During his five-day visit Mr Ocampo will participate in a town hall event on justice and reconciliation where he will answer questions and explain the process that will follow after he was given the go-ahead to investigate Kenya.

"The whole international community is with the Kenyans.  All Kenyans must come together and use the law and justice as a basis for their common future. The common goal is to ensure there is no repeat of violence in the 2012 elections," said the Prosecutor.

He is expected to visit crime scenes in Nairobi, meet victims and talk to them about the events that beset Kenya in 2007/2008.

“As promised, I will meet the victims, listen to them, and understand their views and concerns. We will investigate the crimes, protecting the victims and respecting the rights of the suspects. We will follow the evidence, and we will prosecute those most responsible," he said.

The website further states: “Similar visits to other affected areas outside Nairobi will follow shortly on his next visit to Kenya later this year.”

In an earlier interview with Capital News, Mr Ocampo said he would possibly return to Kenya in September or October of this year, during which he would visit affected areas and people outside Nairobi.

The Prosecutor will also hold meetings with civil society groups, women\’s groups, the business community, religious leaders and the media (community, local and regional radio stations).

The Prosecutor re-affirmed his commitment to investigate those charged with the highest responsibility for the crimes committed and prosecute them.

When he was given permission to start investigations in Kenya, he indicated that he was likely to complete his work by end of this year.

However, ICC processes are not easy.  Upon investigation, he will have to adhere to the court procedures which will require him to ask the Pre-Trial Chamber to issue arrest warrants or summons to suspects.

Enforcement of the arrest warrants and surrendering the suspects to the court will be the next step. This will be a challenge as the court entirely relies on member states to arrest the suspects since it doesn’t have a police unit of its own.

Initial appearance, confirmations of the charges, trial and sentencing will follow respectively.

Appeals and revision is the last phase but can be done at any stage after investigations.


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