, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 12 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has now disclosed how ‘deeply saddened’ he was when he saw his friend and Deputy William Ruto in the dock at the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Tuesday.
State House Spokesman Manoah Esipisu revealed that the opening statements at the start of Ruto’s trial and watching the opening arguments made by ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda as well as the corresponding defence by lawyer Karim Khan distressed the President.
Although Esipisu did not provide many details, he explained that watching the proceedings was difficult for the President because he doesn’t believe the cases have merit.
The trial against Ruto and his co-accused Joshua arap Sang started with the Presiding Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji reading out charges of murder, deportation and persecution to them individually before they pleaded not guilty to each of the counts.
“The President has worked with the Deputy President for a long time and knowing where they have come from and what they stand for, he was distressed to see him appearing in the dock,” explained Esipisu on Thursday.
“And especially in a foreign country on matters which he doesn’t believe there is a proper standing.”
Esipisu, who was addressing journalists at State House Nairobi, added that Kenyatta and Ruto would continue cooperating with the court.
The Head of State had on Wednesday told a crowd in Kwale County that the cases would collapse and that Kenyans should not worry.
“We should stop politicking and focus on the national agenda. Even this thing that you hear coming from outside will disappear. There is no where it is going and at least we will now be able to do our jobs,” he said.
He however declined to give the President’s position on Kenya’s decision to withdraw from the Rome Statute.
He further reiterated the government’s position to close the shame of camps housing Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
“The government has given Sh400,000 to the more than 8,200 remaining IDP households. This will help them get out of the camps and start their lives all again in dignity,” said Esipisu.
Ruto and Sang’s trial was adjourned on Wednesday until next Tuesday to await the arrival of an expert witness lined up to testify against them.