Uhuru, Ruto Innocent, Says Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary
Kenya Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed believes President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto are “not guilty” of crimes against humanity because three other suspects in their cases earlier had their charges dropped.
Ms Mohammed who is in London told the BBC’s HARDTalk on Wednesday afternoon that the two shouldn’t be standing trial at the International Criminal Court because they are not responsible for the violence that happened in 2008.
When HARDTalk’s host Zeinab Badawi asked if she thought Mr Ruto deserved to be charged at the ICC, she said “No!”
“They are not guilty. I have decided that (they are not guilty) because the pot of evidence that has been used in the Kenyan cases is the same for the six suspects that were before the court in the beginning,” she told the show.
“Three of the cases have been dismissed. There is nothing additional that happened that could have led to the president and the deputy president being in court today.”
Both Mr Kenyatta and Mr Ruto alongside radio journalist Joshua Sang have been charged at the ICC with having a hand in the 2007/2008 post-poll skirmishes in which 1,133 people died and more than 600,000 displaced.
The case against Mr Ruto and his Co-accused Sang started last week while that of Mr Kenyatta is due for November 12.
Initially though, Mr Kenyatta’s co-accused included former Head of Public Service Francis Muthaura and former Police chief Maj-Gen (Rtd) Hussein Ali
In Mr Ruto’s case was former Tinderet MP Henry Kosgey.
Maj-Gen (Rtd) Ali and Mr Kosgey’s cases were dropped last year by the Pre-Trial Chamber II judges citing lack of sufficient evidence.
Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda later let Mr Muthaura off the hook after she admitted she no longer had witnesses to testify against him.
Both Mr Ruto and Mr Sang denied the charges last week.
In the interview, Ms Mohammed told the BBC that Mr Ruto shouldn’t be at the Hague court standing trial because he has “relentlessly” been campaigning for peace since the 2008 violence.
“From 2008 to date, William Ruto has been on a campaign of reconciling the different Kenyan ethnic groups.
He has done that relentlessly, he has done that courageously. He made sure that all the Kenyan communities came together.”
“He wasn’t standing for president of the republic! He wasn’t. He was contesting as a member of parliament, and he would win that any time of the day because he is a popular politician.”
The Foreign Affairs Minister argued the two have the “confidence of the electorate” as demonstrated in their win earlier this year in the general elections.
The show would be re-aired Wednesday on BBC at 11.30pm, East African Time.
- Daily Nation