By Joseph Lister Nyaringo
This December will remain a historic period for Kenya especially for those who cherish justice and the rule of law. Our Country has made a great stride towards liquidating impunity and for the first time, the famous and might have been shaken from their comfort zones.
The new order for Kenya has beckoned and this is a reflection that we are headed to better governance systems and practices. The new constitution has rekindled past injustices like murder of Dr. Robert Ouko, the Artur brothers saga, the Wikleaks which is a blessing in disguise for the Kenyan people who now know what they wouldn’t have known about the past and present government.
Above all, The ICC has humbled a section of our powerful click despite the glamour, the money, the fame and the beautiful offices. This is a reflection that justice will prevail to protect the vulnerable, the unknown, the less famous, the poor, beggars, the hawkers and street peddlers.
Indeed, the rich also can cry. God has heard the cries of the impoverished lowly Kenyans who have never seen justice since independence.
Who knew that The Hague 6 would include the Head of the Civil Service, the custodian of the President of the Republic of Kenya’s diary and the former commissioner of police when the President is the commander in chief of the disciplined forces?
The inclusion of Muthaura and Major Hussein Ali in the list of The Hague 6 has actually put many people in a quandary especially on what the President knew about the 2008 post election violence.
The President and Prime Minister, now giving conflicting remarks after the famous Waki envelope has been opened did assure Mr. Moreno-Ocampo and Dr. Kofi Annan recently that the government was committed to safeguard the work of the ICC in Kenya. They also promised to arrest those indicted for the post election violence and hand them to The Hague for trial.
The 6 individuals named by Mr. ocampo are mere suspects who have not been proven guilty by the ICC and if the President and Prime Minister believe in this concept, they should let justice take its course instead of coming up with a move that is likely to raise a red flag about their move on the Hague 6.
We have clearly seen that a local tribunal will prone to manipulation by the State and therefore, to scale down impunity in our land, the best way to go is The Hague where the alleged perpetrators must be ready to face three verdicts whose outcomes will encompass these: outright acquittal if proven not guilty, life imprisonment or the hangman’s noose.
The two principals should remember that Kenyans want an end to the cycle of impunity and getting justice for the massive crimes committed during the post election violence is the best way to go instead of trying to shield a few individuals for political expediency.
I fail to understand why the President and the Prime Minister are making a “U” turn in supporting a local tribunal when they would not rally legislators to vote for the establishment of one when they had humble time to do so. It reflects that they are not serious about ending impunity, which has bedeviled Kenya for many decades.
After all, a local tribunal is likely to be manipulated and this will deny justice to the post violence victims and the majority of Kenyans who want the victims to be tried by the ICC.
Majority of Kenyans voted for the current constitution to help us fight impunity, which has bedeviled our society for many decades and this can be achieved through political will from those in the Country’s top leadership.
Joseph Lister Nyaringo,
Sec. General, Kenya Global Unity, NJ US