A leading human rights activist in Kenya has read mischief in the demand by Deputy President William Ruto’s lawyers for a special prosecutor to investigate prosecution witness at the ICC or refer the matter to Kenyan authorities.
While acknowledging that the allegations of prosecution witnesses lying to the International Criminal Court were serious and required investigation, Kenya Human Rights Commission boss, George Kegoro(pictured), said special investigative mechanism sought by the Ruto team was not provided for under the Rome Statute, the treaty that creates the ICC.
“What [Mr] Khan is seeking is difficult to sustain in the context of the Ruto case. Even if true, his allegations would need the opening of an independent case against those he has complained against, rather like the cases against the three witnesses that the ICC has sought arrest warrants against in the Ruto case. Those cases are independent trials, rather than trials within the Ruto case,” he added.
Mr Kegoro claimed that Mr Khan was using the platform of the Ruto case to claim more powers for himself, and his client, than an ordinary complainant would usually have.
“Even the Prosecutor, who can be said to be a privileged complainant, has not sought to conflate the Ruto case with the cases of the witnesses alleged to have interfered with the case,” he said.
He scoffed at attempts to refer the matter to Kenyan authorities in the event that the ICC chooses not deal with it, saying: “These are the same authorities that have stalled in the handing over of wanted accused person and whom the trial chamber found had caused an intolerable atmosphere which contributed to the collapse of the Ruto case.”
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