On Thursday President Mwai Kibaki and his entire Cabinet gathered at State House Nairobi and deliberated on what to do with those who killed, maimed, raped women and torched houses during the post election violence last year.
President Kibaki and his generals agreed after hours of deliberations to go the way of healing and reconciliation for the country. This is a good move, but only to the extent that we need national healing. Our country has been at war with itself and it’s now time we reflect and find it in our hearts to engage with each other in a reconciliatory manner.
This is the much we can go. Period! As much as we forgive and say ‘reconcile’ there is one most important thing that we need to be clear about. We must end impunity; We must punish those who sponsored, incited and participated in the wanton killings and destruction of our beloved country.
From what happened on Thursday, it is clear the Big Brother (Cabinet) wants to protect their own and they don’t care. Even though the decision may well not be unanimous, they are saying ‘when it suits us we sit and agree because we are in charge. This is our government and it is us who can make such drastic decision’. It is now clear that the Cabinet is an embodiment of impunity in itself.
My message today is punish, punish and punish those who killed. There is nothing like reconciliation when there is no justice.
Since the decision was announced, there were mixed reactions from across the country with majority of Kenyans including religious leaders and even the foreign missions expressing disapproval.
I have also followed the debate in our news bulletins and also comments posted on this website. The verdict is clear. We must not allow impunity to prevail.
I have talked to women who were raped, men whose limbs got chopped off and families whose houses were burnt down. They only have one question – how do you ask me to forgive someone who’s not humble enough to make the apology.
People who were leading perfectly normal lives were evicted from their homes and their property destroyed and are currently being forced to live in desperate conditions.
How do you ask me to let go, forget and move on? How do we even move on? Where do we start?
These are the pertinent questions that need to be addressed.
In other countries those who committed offences have been punished and there are of course some who have been forgiven after they confessed and sought forgiveness. The big guns must face trial for what they did to this country. We need reconciliation to move forward and heal the nation but that can only happen when those responsible are called to account for their actions.
I still propose the Hague option to deal with impunity.