Kalonzo now courts Ethiopia on ICC

January 21, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 21 – Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka is in Addis Ababa for a meeting with Prime Minister Meles Zenawi as part of efforts to shore up support for the tabling of a Motion at an upcoming AU summit for a deferral of the Kenya case at the International Criminal Court.

Mr Zenawi will be hosting other heads of State and government at the African Union summit between January 30-31 in Addis Ababa and his support is seen as crucial, Mr Musyoka’s personal assistant Kaplich Barsito told Capital News.

“The Vice President will be in Addis Ababa for two days after successful lobbying in South Africa, Uganda and more significantly in Malawi where the chairman of the African Union Bingu wa Mutharika backed the plan.”

Mr Musyoka also met the chairman of the AU commission Jean Ping who was in Nairobi this week to brief President Kibaki on the upcoming summit.

Kenya is expected to step up the lobbying for a deferral of the ICC case at the council of ministers ahead of the main conference since the issue was not in the original agenda of the talks.

Mr Musyoka returned to Kenya on Thursday after meeting with Mr Mutharika in Lilongwe where he was assured of support in the plan.

After the meeting, Mr Mutharika was quoted saying: “I am sure Kenya’s intention to request for a deferral is in keeping with the provisions of the Rome Statute which Kenya is a signatory to, and therefore the UN Security Council should have no problem considering it favourably.

The VP alongside several other Cabinet Ministers have been on shuttle diplomacy across African capitals to shore up support for Kenya’s request at the Addis Ababa summit.

Metropolitan Minister Njeru Githae has been to Djibouti, Burundi and Tanzania while Trade Minister Chirau Ali Mwakwere has visited Zambia in an itinerary that will take him to Botswana, Zimbabwe and Lesotho.

Kenya wants lobby the AU to ask for a deferral of the Kenya case through the United Nations Security Council as happened in the case of Sudanese President Omar al Bashir as efforts as made back at home to set up a local tribunal to try suspects of the 2008-post election violence.

Last month, International Criminal Court Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo named six suspects he wants indicted for their alleged role in the violence.

They include Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta, Head of Public Service Francis Muthaura and former Police Commissioner Hussein Ali.

Others are Tinderet MP Henry Kosgey, William Ruto of Eldoret North and radio presenter Joshua arap Sang.

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