, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 6 – As the blame game continues over who procured witnesses to ‘fix’ Deputy President William Ruto at the International Criminal Court, ex-PM Raila Odinga has turned the guns on Uhuru Kenyatta, saying his people were responsible.
Odinga on Tuesday said there was no way he or his ODM party would have fixed a top member and negotiator of the party during the disputed 2007 General Election.
He said Ruto was one of the Pentagon members who included Charity Ngilu, Najib Balala, Joe Nyagah and Musalia Mudavadi.
In addition, he said ODM selected Ruto to represent the party during the Kofi Annan-led mediation talks that resulted in creation of a coalition government.
“We therefore find it rather awkward and hypocritical for some people to allege that the ODM leadership “fixed” our comrade William Ruto, who was at the centre of our negotiations. Mr Ruto was, at that time, a prime target of those who stole the elections. Facts as narrated above make claims by Jubilee a most preposterous proposal and one of the biggest lies ever peddled in our country,” Odinga stated.
Both ODM and the Party of National Unity (PNU) each nominated three members to join the mediation team.
ODM was represented by Sally Kosgey, James Orengo, Mudavadi and Ruto whereas PNU was represented by NARC Kenya chairperson Martha Karua, the late Mutula Kilonzo and Moses Wetangula.
Odinga said the Post Election Violence was as a result of the disputed presidential poll where ODM supporters felt that elections had been rigged by Mwai Kibaki’s PNU.
“It was very clear to us in ODM that without the rigging of the elections there would not have been violence in Kenya,” he stated.
He went on to explain that apart from the elections being rigged, Ruto’s people (158 Kalenjins) were killed by State machinery.
“The Kenyan State had ceased being a neutral positive force. It was behind the killings of innocent citizens, a huge number of whom were from Deputy President William Ruto’s backyard of Eldoret.”
If anyone fixed Ruto, Odinga said, it could not have been his ODM colleagues who entrusted him with the role of negotiating power on behalf of the party and also accepting him in the top brass of the ODM leadership.
In his view, Ruto was fixed by people in the rival party which was PNU.
He specifically singled out controversial politician Moses Kuria who revealed he was involved in procuring witnesses who were enlisted by the ICC to testify against Ruto.
One of the persons he named is Martha Karua who has since obtained orders restraining him from dragging her name into the issue.
Odinga charged that Kuria worked as an assistant for President Kenyatta who was at the time chairman of KANU, an affiliate party of PNU during the 2007 General Election.
“Moses Kuria was an employee and a political assistant to Mr Kenyatta when he arranged the procuring of witnesses to fix Ruto. Kuria worked for Uhuru Kenyatta from 2008. He worked at the UK Centre at Baden Powell House as Uhuru’s political assistant up to 2014,” Odinga alleged.
“This is the period when, by Kuria’s own admission, witnesses were being procured against Mr Ruto. The work Kuria did during the course of his employment must be presumed to have been done for and on behalf of his Principal, Kenyatta.”
The ICC prosecution has already closed its case against Ruto and Sang.
Kenya is waiting for a landmark appeal ruling on if statements of five witnesses who recanted their evidence will be allowed in court as evidence or not.
Defence teams are also expected to file a motion of-no-case-to-answer by November 20.
On the other hand, Kuria has agreed to be a defence witness in the Ruto-Sang case if the court partially or fully rejects the motion.
Officers from the Office of The Prosecutor are also expected to hold a meet with Kuria on Friday over his utterances regarding recruitment of ICC witnesses.