ICC trials an indictment of Kenya

April 9, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 9 – The ongoing International Criminal Court (ICC) process has ushered Kenya to the league of failed nations, respected political analyst and consultant Mutahi Ngunyi argues.

Mr Ngunyi asserted in a television interview with K24 senior anchor, Jeff Koinange that there was nothing for Kenyans to celebrate over the trial of the Ocampo Six who will return from The Hague this weekend after appearing before the ICC to answer summonses.

"The people who are celebrating are doing it wrongly. This (ICC process) is a big shame for our country since we have been put in the same category with the likes of Somalia, Sudan and Liberia," the analyst charged.

He explained that charging only the six namely; Uhuru Kenyatta, William Ruto, Henry Kosgey, Francis Muthaura, Maj Gen (Rtd) Hussein Ali and Joshua arap Sang as the architects of the 2008 post-election violence was a flawed exercise that will do little to serve justice for the victims.

"The list should have had 38 million people; all of us are culpable in this incidence. To receive such international limelight with people who are our leaders whether they did or not is not a reason to celebrate."

Mr Ngunyi held the six cited by ICC Chief Prosecutor, Luis Moreno Ocampo, as the carriers of the biggest responsibility for the bloodletting that cost more than 1,500 lives, destruction of property and internal displacement of persons should not have been allowed to leave the country for The Hague.

"Local mechanisms have been overtaken by events but if I were (President Mwai) Kibaki, I would have asked the six to deposit their passports with Immigration or ordered their house arrest pending investigations.

"This would have forced Ocampo to come for them here through the president and although such action would have caused huge diplomatic and international row, at least Kenya would not have been shamed," he intoned.

Mr Ngunyi cited the example of Sudanese president, Omar al Bashir, who is wanted by the ICC for crimes against humanity who has been shielded by his nation from the prosecutor as a precedent Kenya should have followed.

He took fault with Kenya\’s ICC process saying the excision of 14 names on the Waki List left a lot to be desired as far as credibility is concerned.


The report by a commission led by Justice Philip Waki into the post-election violence formed the basis of the proceedings facing the accused when an envelope containing 20 names was presented to the prosecutor.

Mr Ngunyi cautioned the six not to rejoice their return stating the hearings of the Pre-Trial Chamber was just the beginning of a humiliating process.

"Ocampo is a mischievous prosecutor and the guarantees to the suspects that shield them from incarceration have been given by the court but not prosecutor. Their release is pegged on a number of conditions that they to adhere to.

"The prosecutor might invoke Article 119 of the Rome Statute to compel the detention of the suspects and living in a tiny cell in The Hague, contrary to what we are being made to believe, is crushing."

He fronted the examples of former Yugoslavia strongman, Slobodan Milosevic who committed suicide while imprisoned at The Hague and former Liberian president, Charles Taylor who have suffered the strain of the protracted legal process at the ICC.

The political analyst as well as newspaper columnist observed the failure of a local judicial process that would have saved the country\’s face was precipitated by the fractured Grand Coalition government.

"When Kofi Annan came here to mediate the conflict, he anticipated they cannot run a bi-polar government together and a local mechanism cannot be implemented in the context of the Coalition Government."

"That is why he pushed a clause in the National Accord that states the bi-polar Government stands dissolved if one of the partners pulls out to hold the tricky arrangement together."




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