, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 20 – The defence teams of Deputy President William Ruto and journalist Joshua arap Sang are expected to start cross-examining the first ICC prosecution witness on Friday afternoon.
Ruto’s lead counsel Karim Khan will first interrogate the witness before Sang’s lawyer Katwa Kigen takes over.
Sources in The Hague told Capital FM News that the International Criminal Court Prosecution was expected to finish laying out the evidence of the witness when the court re-convened for Friday’s session.
It’s understood that the witness on Thursday afternoon continued detailing – in a private session – the 2008 attack that occurred at the Kiambaa church.
“I am sure the public will understand because efforts are being made by some people to reveal the identity of the witnesses with obvious intent of discouraging the witness to testify. The public will surely understand that measures need to be taken,” said Trial Chamber V (a) Presiding Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji as he directed the trial to take place in secret.
Journalists and Kenyan Members of Parliament have been camping outside the court house waiting for the details of goings-on inside the chamber.
The trial is being held in private after concerns were raised by the Office of the Prosecutor about the exposure of the witness in Kenyan online media platforms, a couple of hours after she took the stand.
The defence lawyers however insisted that her sessions be held in public and only go in-camera when the witness is about to reveal personal details about herself or her family members.
On Tuesday, the woman only identified as P0536, mentioned Stephen Chemalang’, Emmanuel Bull, Kimepo and an unknown male identified as ‘Brown,’ as the men who lit the Kiambaa church fire that killed 35 people.
“Chemelang’ himself was wearing khaki trousers and a bandana on his head, I saw him through a crack in the church window with a blue jerrycan in his hand. He poured the contents of the jerrycan, petrol, onto one of our mattresses and threw it onto the roof of the church in which we were hiding,” she recounted.
She told the court that she was one of the people, mainly mothers and children, who had sought refuge at the Church when violence broke out after former President Mwai Kibaki was sworn-in after the 2007 General Election.
A lot of media attention has been focused on the witness since her testimony, and on Thursday Victims’ Legal Representative Wilfred Nderitu said that he was concerned about her psychological well-being and ability to testify with the world’s attention on her.
Nderitu called for her session to be held in private to enable her testify without fear.[cresta-social-share]