Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wako orders police to probe the Ocampo Six

File | NATION Attorney-General Amos Wako, who has ordered investigations on the six Kenyans accused at the International Criminal Court of masterminding the poll violence.
File | NATION Attorney-General Amos Wako, who has ordered investigations on the six Kenyans accused at the International Criminal Court of masterminding the poll violence.
Posted  Tuesday, April 26 2011 at 22:00
In Summary
  • AG gives Hague judges dossier, including records on pirate cases handled by local courts

Attorney-General Amos Wako has ordered that the Ocampo Six be investigated over the post election violence.
Mr Wako wrote to Police Commissioner Matthew Iteere two weeks ago directing him to include the suspects in the investigations.
The order is among 22 documents attached to an application to the International Criminal Court’s Registrar seeking access to the evidence Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo has against the six suspects.
Kenya wants to be allowed to try the masterminds of the violence which followed the presidential election results in 2007. The case went to the ICC after the government failed to convince Parliament to set up a local tribunal.
Mr Wako, in the letter to Mr Iteere, refers to two reports by a joint team from the police and the Directorate of Public Prosecutions which reviewed the status of the investigations and prosecutions into election violence-related cases.
The report says 3,386 cases were pending.
Allegations of participation
“I write therefore to direct you that all cases pending investigations are concluded expeditiously and the investigation files submitted to me for appropriate directions. Additionally, you are directed to investigate all other persons against whom there may be allegation of participation in the post election violence, including the six persons who are subject to the proceedings currently before the International Criminal Court,” Mr Wako said.
The main application was filed by Sir Geoffrey Nice and Mr Rodney Dixon on Thursday last week.
“The government has informed the court it is conducting an investigation at all levels in respect of all persons against whom there may be allegations of participation in post-election violence,” the application states in part.
This underscores the government’s determination to ensure the cases facing Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta, suspended minister William Ruto and Civil Service boss Francis Muthaura are tried locally.
Other suspects are Tinderet MP Henry Kosgey, Postmaster-General Hussein Ali and radio presenter Joshua Sang.
Mr Wako’s letter was copied to CID boss Ndegwa Muhoro, who said a team has been formed to conduct the investigations.
“We are collecting as much evidence as possible because we cannot rush such sensitive cases,” Mr Muhoro said.
This is the second bid by Kenya to try the suspects locally. The first attempt sought a deferral of the cases through the UN Security Council, which failed early this month.
The government is now challenging the admissibility of the cases and the mandate of the ICC to try the crimes.
The 22 documents submitted by the defence comprise a report on the status of the investigations into the post election violence, the Witness Protection Act, Vetting of Judges and Magistrates Act, a copy of the new Constitution and several speeches by Mr Wako and Chief Public Prosecutor Keriako Tobiko on the reforms in the directorate of prosecution and Judiciary.
The status report indicates 94 cases have been prosecuted and those involved jailed, 57 cases have been discharged, 179 withdrawn and 62 were pending. There are 20 cases in which known assailants were yet to be arrested and at least 3,386 inquiry files are on going.
The investigations are centred on the Rift Valley, Western, Nyanza, Central, Coast, Eastern and Nairobi provinces.
Mr Wako has also included a file on Somali pirates being tried in Kenya. This is meant to boost Kenya’s argument that its courts have the capacity to try international crimes.
Also attached is President Kibaki’s speech pledging to cooperate with the court when the Assembly of State Parties President Mr Christian Wenaweser paid him a courtesy call in January, and a resolution of the African Union Heads of State Summit last July in Kampala supporting Kenya’s bid for a deferral through the UN Security Council.
The Pre-Trial Chamber 1 gave the victims, defence and the prosecutor until today to hand in their submissions on the application challenging the trial of the cases at The Hague.
A date will be set for the hearing of Kenya’s application.
Mr Kenyatta, Mr Ruto, Mr Muthaura, Mr Kosgey, Maj-Gen Ali and Mr Sang went to The Hague for initial appearance on April 7 and 8.

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