After Ruto, Bensouda now goes for Uhuru

The prosecution said if the Trial Chamber does not reverse its decision, it should allow it leave to challenge the decision at the Appeal’s Chamber/FILE

The prosecution said if the Trial Chamber does not reverse its decision, it should allow it leave to challenge the decision at the Appeal’s Chamber/FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 25 – The International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecution wants Trial Chamber V(b) to re-consider its decision which allowed President Uhuru Kenyatta to skip sessions of his trial which starts on November 12.

In a statement, the prosecution said it would ask for a reversal of the decision based on Friday’s ruling by the Appeal’s Chamber which made it mandatory for Deputy President William Ruto to continuously attend sessions of his trial.

The prosecution said if the Trial Chamber does not reverse its decision, it should allow it leave to challenge the decision at the Appeal’s Chamber.

“The Office of the Prosecutor will request Trial Chamber V(b) to reconsider its decision to conditionally excuse Mr Kenyatta from continuous presence at his trial or in the alternative, to grant the OTP leave to appeal that decision,” the OTP indicated.

The prosecution said it based its intention to appeal based on the ruling made by the Appeals Chamber in regards to Ruto’s request.

The Appeals Chamber on Friday ruled that Ruto can apply to be excused from continuous presence only in exceptional instances on case-by-case basis.

Moments after the ruling, Ruto was allowed to skip his trial for three days following a request by his lawyer Karim Khan who said Ruto required to be in Kenya to hold brief for President Kenyatta who will be travelling to a regional security meeting in Rwanda.

Last Friday, Trial Chamber V(b) allowed Kenyatta to skip sessions of his trial so that he can attend to his State duties as the President of Kenya.

Trial Chamber V(b) judges said they allowed President Kenyatta’s request in respect of his rights and also in consideration of protection of victims and witnesses.

The judges however made it mandatory for Kenyatta to attend the opening and closing statements of all parties to the case and during the presentation of victims’ views.

They also said Kenyatta would be required in person during the sentencing hearings, delivery of the sentence, during the impact hearings of victims and also during reparation hearings.

JUDIE KABERIA

JUDIE KABERIA

Judie, a Special Projects Reporter started practicing journalism in 2003. She has worked in Kenya and Germany. Judie has scooped awards in Reproductive Health, Population, Gender and Development. She has participated in international conferences in Germany, Switzerland and Netherlands. Judie has written a booklet, 'Justice and Peace in the Kenyan Eye'. She has a soft spot for human rights, crime, peace and justice stories and she is now pursuing a Master's Degree at the University of Leicester (U.K).