NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 24 – Former Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey on Tuesday expressed his delight and satisfaction after he was cleared by International Criminal Court of crimes against humanity.
The Tinderet MP who spoke in Nairobi said that he was happy to have been proved right.
“I have always maintained that I had nothing to do with the sad events of 2008… I am happy that judges were attentive to the evidence presented on my behalf and I have been vindicated by the court,” he said.
Kosgey called for calm among the people of Kenya and expressed optimism that the international court will do justice to both the victims of the violence and the accused.
“It is my hope and prayer that justice will prevail for all those concerned in the fullness of time,” said Kosgey who was also accompanied by lawyers Julius Kemboy and George Oraro.
“The events of 2007 were tragic and I continue to deeply sympathise with the plight of post election violence victims and the Internally Displaced People (IDPs) throughout Kenya.”
The ODM chairman affirmed that his ‘thoughts and prayers’ were with the four whose cases were confirmed by the ICC on Monday.
The MP who was accompanied by at least 10 ODM legislators was reluctant to confirm whether their presence at the briefing was a sign that he was still supportive of the party.
Among those present at the briefing was ODM Deputy Party Leader Musalia Mudavadi, ministers James Orengo and Otieno Kajwang and Deputy Speaker Farah Maalim.
On Monday judges at the International Criminal Court cleared Kosgey and former Police Commissioner Hussein Ali of crimes against humanity charges levelled against them.
The judges ruled that there was no sufficient evidence to commit the two to full trial for their alleged roles as direct co-perpetrators of violence meted on Kenyans in some parts of the country after the 2007 disputed presidential poll.
The judges said: “As to Mr Kosgey and Mr Ali, the chamber wishes to clarify that they are no longer suspects before the court.”
“In relation to Mr Kosgey, the chamber found that the prosecutor’s evidence failed to satisfy the evidentiary threshold required. The chamber was not persuaded by the evidence presented by the prosecutor of Mr Kosgey’s alleged role within the organisation,” presiding Judge Ekaterina Trendafilova said in the ruling televised from The Hague.
“Moreover, the chamber determined that Mr Kosgey suffered prejudice due to the redaction of certain dates related to a number of meetings that he allegedly attended, which proved to be essential for his defence and for the finding on his criminal responsibility,” she said.
“In light of these facts and the entire body of evidence relating to Mr Kosgey’s criminal responsibility, the chamber declined to confirm the charges against Mr Kosgey,” the court said in acquitting Kosgey.
Kosgey was let free in a case where his co accused, Eldoret North MP William Ruto and radio journalist Joshua Arap sang were committed to trial.
The judges said Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo had satisfied the chamber that the two were indirect co-perpetrators of the crimes they were charged with “As to the criminal responsibility of Mr Ruto and Mr Sang, the chamber found, on the basis of the evidence presented, that they are responsible for the charges levied against them.”
In particular, the judges said: “Pre-Trial Chamber II confirmed the charges against Mr Ruto as an indirect co-perpetrator with others, pursuant to article 25(3)(a) of the Rome Statute, while it found that Mr Sang contributed to the commission of said crimes against humanity, pursuant to article 25(3)(d)(i), to the extent specified in the written decision.”
But Ruto immediately dismissed the charges saying that they remain strange to him and that he will appeal against them.
“Allegations against me will forever be strange to me. My legal team will move expeditiously to analyse the ruling and the actions to take,” Ruto told reporters at a press conference at his Karen home shortly after the ruling was announced.