, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 11 – The Parliamentary Committee on Defence and Foreign Relations now wants Sam Ongeri to write to his UK counterpart William Hague, to get an explanation on the allegations of a conspiracy by Britain to have President Mwai Kibaki indicted by the International Criminal Court.
The MPs led by committee chairman Adan Keynan claimed that the government was not doing enough to facilitate police investigations to determine the authenticity of the ‘leaked documents’.
Keynan said that the issue had divided MPs with some holding the view that the dossier was authentic, while others doubted its origin.
National Assembly Speaker Kenneth Marende referred the matter to the committee after he failed to determine whether the documents tabled by the Yatta MP Charles Kilonzo and his Dujis counterpart Aden Duale were genuine.
“You are the interface between Kenya and the rest of the world, so because the (British) High Commission has made its decision (to remain tight lipped), I am saying that you take it a notch higher and as a minister write to your counterpart and seek for the re-consideration of the same,” he said.
Keynan added: “So that if at that level, it doesn’t work then we will make an informed decision because as it is, it is not good for the UK and it’s not good for us, because it always leaves room for speculation.” Nominated MP George Nyamweya further suggested that the president should step in and get a binding response from the UK government which has so far said it does not comment on leaked documents. Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni also sought the comment of the country’s top diplomat whether he had probed an alleged meeting between two members of the civil society and a former Mungiki leader which is alleged to have taken place at the UK mission in Kenya.
Reading from a sworn affidavit by former Mungiki leader Ndura Waruinge, Kioni said the meeting was called to discuss how donor agencies of both the US and UK would found a generational change movement in the region to the tune of Sh80 million ($1 million).
“How would you take a government which hosts members of a group which has been banned by another country, and discuss how to spend a whooping one million dollars, would that concern your ministry?” Kioni queried.
But the Foreign Affairs Minister explained that they had exhausted all diplomatic means with the UK government and hit a dead end after the UK minister for African Affairs commented on the matter during his visit last month.
“What you are asking me to do is to make a decision for Parliament. We have done what is necessary to be able to secure information for this. We have reached that end, now it’s up to the committee to make recommendations to Parliament on how they see it,” Ongeri said.
The UK government through an informal diplomatic communication known as a ‘note verbale’ denied the document citing a plethora of spelling mistakes.
“That is the position, but that doesn’t mean I have to buy into that kind of position,” Ongeri stated.
Meanwhile, the parliamentary committee has questioned the creation of a Cabinet Committee on the International Criminal Court (ICC).
This came after the committee chairman George Saitoti insisted that as a liaison team between the ICC and the government they had no information on the authenticity of the controversial UK dossier.
Keynan wondered what informed the creation of the six-member Cabinet committee which he said is duplicating the functions of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
MPs Jeremiah Kioni and Wilson Litole wondered whether the Saitoti-led committee was employing delay tactics to ensure that the matter ‘fizzles out of public attention.’
Kioni further wondered whether the Cabinet committee had sought the opinion of The Hague based Court on allegations made in the dossier.
He said the content of the documents has serious implications on the security of this nation.
“Has this high powered committee bothered to look at all this information that is being passed all over and has the Committee found it necessary in the interest of this country to take it up with the ICC? ” he asked.