6 September 2013

Kenya: Uhuru, Ruto Will Concurrently Be At ICC for a Month

Nairobi — Concern is mounting in government over a new schedule from the International Criminal Court (ICC) places President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto at The Hague at the same time for a whole month.

The schedule shows that Kenyatta and Ruto will be required to be at the Dutch-based court concurrently from November 12 to December 13, despite concerns being raised against their being away at the same time.

The schedule also indicates that Ruto and Sang will have their trials held from 9:30am to 1pm while Kenyatta's sessions will be held in the afternoons starting from 2:30pm to 6pm.

The trials against Ruto and his co accused Joshua arap Sang are scheduled to begin next Tuesday.

The initial schedule indicated that Ruto and Sang's trial would go on until October 4 when the court would take 10 days off and then continue until November 1.

The initial schedule also showed that Kenyatta's trial would begin on November 12.

With the initial schedule, the two leaders would not have to be at The Hague at the same time.

A civil society has already moved to court to bar the two leaders from attending the upcoming trials because it would cause a constitutional crisis and a leadership vacuum.

But the ICC insists that international laws supersede national laws.

The civil society (National Conservative Forum) and former Garsen MP separately want the ICC to shelve the trials until the two finish their term.

Former Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka had recently indicated that they would get people to lead the country when Kenyatta and Ruto leave for The Hague, further compounding the concerns raised.

But during the height of the campaigns, Kenyatta and Ruto down played the ICC trials saying they could rule the country via Skype.

Some Kenyans have also been complaining over the manner in which the court is handling the cases against Kenyatta, Ruto and Sang saying that it has an open bias against them.

On Thursday, Members of the National Assembly reconvened to debate Kenya's membership to the Rome Statute.

Those allied to the Jubilee alliance felt that the court processes were political while those allied to CORD argued that the court would help get rid of impunity.

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