Lawyers body to join case challenging ICC

September 27, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 27 – The Law Society of Kenya (LSK) now wants to be enjoined in a case challenging the work of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on the 2008 post election violence.

LSK chairperson Kenneth Akide said on Monday that lawyers fully supported the work of the ICC in Kenya and accused the government of insincerity.

"We think there is mischief around that issue and we think there are links between that and the honourable minister\’s (Mutula Kilonzo\’s) statement that the ICC is not welcome," Mr Akide said.

"The LSK has always supported the position that victims of post election violence require justice and those who organised and funded it need to be brought to book," he stated.

He said that LSK had already appointed two lawyers to work in the case that was filed in Mombasa last week by a Nairobi businessman.

The case is listed for hearing next month.

On Monday however, Mr Kilonzo clarified that he was not opposed to the ICC\’s work in Kenya, but wanted a local tribunal to ensure justice for all victims of the violence since The Hague Court would only deal with a few individuals.
The LSK at the same time said it had listed 10 lawyers who should be considered for the position of Chief Justice and Deputy Chief Justice under the new constitutional dispensation.

Mr Akide said lawyers were as qualified as the judges to serve in the two positions.

He said they were going to present the shortlist to the President and Prime Minister for consideration.

"We are all members of the legal profession. The positions that are going to come in are not for mechanics, architects, surveyors or engineers; they belong to any member of the legal profession so the judges should not think that those jobs belong to them alone," the LSK chair stated.

Mr Akide also said that LSK was opposed to the inclusion of experts in the implementation of the new Constitution.

"Kenyan lawyers are capable to carry on the task of implementing this Constitution and for now until we say that we are unable the Law Society of Kenya will not accept foreigners in the implementation. We think it undermines the abilities and competencies of Kenyan lawyers. The Constitution itself has been drafted by our own lawyers here," he stated.


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