NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 17 – Three Judges of the Trial Chamber IV at the International Criminal Court (ICC) have been assigned the withdrawn cases against President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto.
The President of the Court appointed Judges Robert Fremr, Reine Alapini-Gansou and Kimberly Prost to the cases against President Kenyatta, DP Ruto and former journalist Joshua arap Sang cases.
The cases against Kenyatta, Ruto and Sang had collapsed after key witnesses withdrew and others recanted their evidence.
The prosecution had argued it had hit a brick wall as its efforts to seek the cooperation of the Kenya government in compelling witnesses to appear before the court and provide confidential documents such as bank statements were fruitless.
In 2016, ICC judges dismissed the charges of crimes against humanity against DP Ruto and journalist Sang, arguing that the prosecution had failed to present sufficient evidence to convict the suspects.
In his ruling, Judges Chile Eboe-Osuji and Robert Fremr dismissed the evidence presented by ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and freed the DP and the former radio presenter.
The judges further cited witness interference as reason for the collapse.
In 2014, chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda reluctantly filed a notice withdrawing allegations against President Kenyatta, accusing the Kenyan government of harassing and intimidating potential witnesses.
President Kenyatta had been charged with crimes against humanity including murder, rape, persecution and deportation as an indirect co-perpetrator in violence that flared after Kenya’s 2007 elections, leaving more than 1,000 people dead.