Ocampo cools off at Kenyan wildlife park

November 6, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 6 – International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo spent Friday morning at the world famous Nairobi National Park, a day after he failed to convince the government to hand over post election violence cases to The Hague.

Mr Ocampo was accompanied by Justice Minister Mutula Kilonzo and other officials when he toured the animal orphanage and took a game drive.

At the orphanage, he came face to face with the three-month cheetah baby named “Lightning Bolt” that was recently adopted by Jamaican Sprinter Usain Bolt. 
Journalists tagged along during the morning tour but Mr Ocampo declined to respond to any questions.  His security detail ensured reporters were kept at bay.

Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Communication Officer Paul Udoto said: “Mr Ocampo showed keen interest in lions especially ‘Agwambo’, the eight-month old lion also adopted by the Prime Minister Raila Odinga last week during the launch of the Namayiana Wildlife Adoption programme by the Kenya Wildlife Service.

In a statement, he said Mr Ocampo was impressed that Kenya had a national park within the city of Nairobi.  “Mr Ocampo said he was fascinated by the sight of graceful giraffes, warthogs and two white rhinos.  The two rhinos were among 10 others that were recently moved from the Lake Nakuru National Park.”

Despite failing to accomplish his mission after the Kenyan government refused to refer investigations and prosecution of the suspected masterminds of the post election violence to the ICC, Mr Ocampo maintained a broad smile and looked relaxed throughout the drive and walk.

He was casually dressed in blue jeans, navy blue jacket and a light blue shirt.  He walked around the park with his hands in his pocket.

When his tour of the park ended, there was a scuffle between journalists and his Kenyan-assigned bodyguards who ensured they kept him guarded from all manner of queries.

He later had lunch at the Rangers Restaurant located within the park before being sneaked out to avoid the journalists who patiently waited for about one hour with the hope of getting a word from him.

The Chief prosecutor later indicated he would hold a news conference at the Windsor Golf and Country Club early on Saturday before departing for the Netherlands.

President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga on Thursday declined to refer the Kenyan case to the ICC prompting Mr Ocampo to indicate he would seek for approval from the ICC pre-trial Chamber to commence investigations next month.


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