UK minister due in Kenya amid ICC storm

March 12, 2012 10:35 am
Youths protesting in 2008 post election violence/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 12 – The United Kingdom’s minister responsible for the International Criminal Court is due in Nairobi next week for talks with the government amid reports that his country was behind a conspiracy to have President Mwai Kibaki indicted by the Hague court over the 2008 post-election violence.

Henry Bellingham is expected in Nairobi on March 20 for a two-day official visit.

Foreign Affairs Minister Moses Wetangula said Bellingham will meet top government officials.

The British High Commission in Nairobi has dismissed as false, allegations made in Parliament on Thursday, accusing the UK of conspiring to have President Kibaki face trial at the ICC when he leaves office.

The High Commission termed the claims by Yatta Member of Parliament Charles Kilonzo as “preposterous.”

When making the sensational claim, Kilonzo said the conspiracy also involved getting presidential candidates Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto arrested and detained when they appear before the ICC for the mention of their case which has been set for trial.

In the same ‘leaked’ report, it was stated that the investigation and possible indictment of President Kibaki could only be achievable if Prime Minister Raila Odinga was president.

The prime minister’s secretariat at the weekend dismissed the purported letter as a forgery and urged Kenyans to ignore it.

In a paid up advertisement in local newspapers, the Raila Odinga Secretariat said that Kenyatta and Ruto should not move around the country under the guise of prayers to incite Kenyans.

“Crimes against humanity are worse than murder. Yet these suspects of crimes against humanity remain free to traverse the country holding ‘prayer meetings’ while Kenyan suspect of lesser crimes of murder conduct their prayers only behind the forbidding walls of Kamiti Maximum Security Prison,” the statement read in part.

Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta termed the statement as unfortunate, saying it was wrong for the PM to make such comments which might stoke ethnic animosity.

“It is very unfortunate for Prime Minister Raila Odinga to make uncalled for remarks during this sensitive time in the country. He must not be allowed to polarise our country in this manner. It is such reckless remarks that led to the 2007 crisis, and loss of lives and property,” Kenyatta said in a statement issued by his Director of Communications Munyori Buku.

Ruto also condemned the Prime Minister and wondered how someone who was the main beneficiary of the post election violence could issue such a statement.

Some 1,500 were killed during the 2008 chaos and more than 500,000 others displaced.

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