CORD, Jubilee legislators differ over Kenya’s withdrawal from ICC

CORD, Jubilee legislators differ over Kenya's withdrawal from ICC

Legislators from Jubilee and CORD have differed over whether the country should withdraw from the Rome Statute that establishes the International Criminal Court (ICC).

In public addresses held in different parts of the country, Jubilee leaders restated their urge to remove Kenya from the Rome Statute sighting unfairness in the expedition of cases.

Laikipia East Member of Parliament Anthony Mutahi Kimaru, who is affiliated to Jubilee, dismissed calls from a section of Jubilee leadership for Kenya to pull out of the Rome Statute, saying the functions of the Hague-based court provided checks and balances on the country’s leadership.

The MP, however, said the court needs to be reformed to make it more credible such that it is not vindictive and is not used to further political ambitions of its financiers.

“I think the function of ICC as a court is important as it acts as a check on authoritarian leadership and dictatorship though it requires a lot of reform to make it credible,” he said.

Kesses MP James Bett, however, said that they will marshal the numbers required in the National Assembly to remove Kenya from ICC.

“We know countries like USA which are not members of ICC and we will do the same to ensure Kenya is out of ICC,” he said.

Lugari MP Ayub Savula said Kenya’s withdrawal from the ICC will be detrimental to the country’s democratic growth since it exposes the country to dictatorial leadership.

“If we get a rogue President, what will happen? If we get an undemocratic President, he will destroy this country, unless there are powers above us to put his actions under scrutiny.”

Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, however, called on Kenyans to maintain unity and leave in harmony saying this will eliminate the worry of which court we are members of.

He called on leaders to preach peace and help the country forge ahead as one, devoid of tribal and political divisions.

In his address during his tour of France last week, President Uhuru Kenyatta bashed ICC for carrying out shoddy investigations in the case facing him and Deputy President William Ruto saying necessary reforms should be instituted in the court’s system failure to which Africa will withdraw.

“As we welcome this decision, Kenya together with like-minded nations, will remain seized of the efforts geared towards the pursuit of justice and equitable participation in the international justice system.”

“As a nation, we recognize our duty to, and respect for, international law and institutions. We will therefore continue to pursue ways to improve the delivery of international justice, uphold the rule of law and promote a just and fair global order.”

Kenya signed the Rome Statute on August 11th, 1999 and ratified on March 15th, 2005 becoming the 98th State Party.

There have been concerted efforts by the current and the former government to withdraw from ICC following the naming of six suspects in relation to the 2007 post-election violence.

The push has, however, not bore fruit as UN Security Council and some member states failed to back Kenya’s bid.


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Story By Benjamin Wafula
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