Uhuru, Ruto Should Not Run
Why would Kenyans elect persons facing life imprisonment for crimes against humanity? Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta and William Samoei Ruto should abandon their presidential hopes and face their criminal trials at The Hague.
The two principals (President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga) should honour the National Accord and the Constitution and initiate the process of stripping these two men, and Francis Muthaura, of public office immediately. This was what the two principals of the Grand Coalition Government pledged to do on December 16, 2008.
The International Criminal Court cases on Kenya’s post-election violence arose from the Waki Commission of Inquiry into Post Election Violence and the unwillingness and inability of the National Assembly to establish a Special Tribunal to try the perpetrators, masterminds and financiers of the post election violence of 2007-2008.
On December 16, 2008, President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga promised Kenyans in writing that any public officer who is charged for offences related to the post election violence of 2007-8 (which the Waki CIPEV Report found resulted in the killing of over 1,133 Kenyans and the forcible displacement of over 500,000 Kenyans) would be immediately suspended from public office.
Kenyans want justice for this criminality and expect President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga to keep their promises.
The Agreement signed by the two Principals of the Government of Kenya, President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga explicitly stated in Article 4 that: “The Parties shall ensure that any person holding public office or any public servant charged with a criminal offence related to 2008 post-election violence shall be suspended from duty until the matter is fully adjudicated upon. The parties shall ensure that any person convicted of a post-election violence offence is barred from holding any public office or contesting any electoral position.”
Kenyans have every expectation that now that the charges against Francis Kirimi Muthaura, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, William Samoei Ruto, and Joshua Arap Sang have been confirmed by the International Criminal Court, that the two principals will now fulfill their pledge to Kenyans that any person holding public office or any public servant charged with a criminal offence related to 2008 post-election violence shall be suspended from duty until the matter is fully adjudicated upon. Kenyans also expect that in the event of conviction the particular individuals will be barred from holding any public office or contesting any electoral position.
Francis Muthaura was Secretary to the Cabinet and Kenya’s senior most civil servant. Uhuru Kenyatta is Kenya’s Deputy Prime Minister, was Minister for Finance, and is a declared presidential candidate in the forthcoming elections. William Ruto is a former member of the Cabinet, and currently a Member of Parliament and presidential candidate. Joshua Sang is a popular radio presenter on KASS FM.
On November 5, 2009, President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga issued a statement after meeting ICC Chief Prosecutor Louis Ocampo. They said "Government remains fully committed to discharge its primary responsibility in accordance with the Rome Statute to establish a local judicial mechanism to deal with the perpetrators of the post election violence. In addition, the Government remains committed to cooperate with ICC within the framework of the Rome Statute and the International Crimes Act."