NAIROBI, Kenya, May 25 – Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta has vowed he will not be distracted in his quest for the country’s presidency by charges he’s facing at the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Kenyatta who spoke in Maragua a day after the ICC rejected his appeal on jurisdiction, insisted that his legal team will be busy in court as he focuses on his campaign.
“My lawyers will concentrate on the case and I will concentrate on the campaign for the presidential election next year,” he firmly resolved.
In a ruling on Thursday, the Appeals Chamber rejected the application in which the Ocampo 4 had contested interpretation of the term ‘organisational policy’ as a component of crimes against humanity.
“In its decisions, the Appeals Chamber indicated that the interpretation and existence of an ‘organisational policy’ relates to the substantive merits of this case as opposed to the issue of whether the court has subject-matter jurisdiction to consider such questions. These issues relate to whether the Pre-Trial Chamber erred when it confirmed the charges in respect of the accused,” the ICC indicated.
Kenyatta will stand trial alongside former Head of Civil Service Francis Muthaura, Eldoret North MP William Ruto and radio journalist Joshua arap Sang.
The Kenyan cases will now proceed to trial, with the process set to commence on June 11 and 12 when the parties will appear at The Hague for a status conference.
Ruto and Sang’s defence teams will attend their status conference on June 11 while lawyers for Kenyatta and Muthaura will appear the following day.
On Thursday, while addressing teachers from Rift Valley province in Nakuru, Kenyatta insisted that he wanted to be judged as on his own leadership record and not to be compared with his father, the late Mzee Jomo Kenyatta.
“Leaders who keep referring to the past in their politics are retrogressive, and I have no apologies for being Kenyatta’s son,” he reiterated.
He also hit out at KANU leaders challenging them to build their party rather than blame others for their woes.
On Thursday KANU Secretary General Nick Salat accused Kenyatta, a former KANU chairman, of frustrating the party that has now been issued with a two-week notice to vacate its offices near Yaya Centre although he insisted that the party has already acquired new premises.
Salat also petitioned the Political Parties Dispute Resolution Tribunal for arbitration in a matter against The National Alliance (TNA) Party for using KANU’s dominant colors.
The letter has been copied to the Registrar of Political Parties for action as well as to the Chairman of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
Kenyatta who quit the party in April launched TNA last Sunday at a colourful ceremony under the slogan ‘I believe’.