|Bishop Desmond Tutu has a million signatures against pulling out|
of the ICC but the political class does not care
|Bishop Kipsang Muge: Military man turned cleric with a call for justice. Like many unaccounted for Kenyans, he died for opposing oppression and misrule http://www.dacb.org/stories/kenya/muge_kipsang.html |
But what are they to do? Some of them did questioned why Omar al Bashir of Sudan was in Kenya to celebrate a new Constitution in 2010 as he had a warrant of arrest. Why he was free in Kenya, a signatory to the Rome Statute? Who really cares about such things at the top. Believes them? They signed for convenience even then. When it goes against power, you can withdraw. And shout that this is against Africans since all the dead are white bones.
Some people raised questions still. Even walked away from high tables when Bashir visited. But they did not hold the invitation cards. The feast was on. You can get rid of noisy people like Bishop Alexander Muge like a fly and life continues.
Voices of reason are intolerable. This is Africa. The one that is blaming the West left right and centre for all woes including hauling our own presidents to the Hague. Busy regional hub airports can close for the arrival of chosen guests. Even military ones for wedding guests. Ask Zuma.
Hundreds of civil society organisations in Afrika want to claim victory for Human Rights on the continent but many politicians stand in the way. They are big.
Today, many human rights groups are opposed to all African countries pulling out of the International Criminal Court. But they are not the ones who pay for trips to Addis in Ethiopia for Extraordinary meetings. The big ones will cook, serve and eat and maybe something will remain for the poor to eat. Human rights?
The turning away from the ICC would make sense if the continent were stronger on human rights issues and was apt in mechanisms. If the Africa's Human And People's Rights Court were strengthened. This getting away from ICC and going to our own weak courts so interfered with by the Big Five ( the animals are innocent) is something Mwai Kibaki started to talk about because of the Kenyan cases before the International Criminal Court. The proposed turning away from the ICC is not hinged on justice. It is based on evasion of justice and the cry that DUE PROCESS cannot be part of a ruling president's life. But he went to the elections aware of that. Was Africa and not used as a protective shield?
Is this a blessing in disguise for the future of Africa? Will there be
a new form of resistance birthed by this?
Bishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa has a signature campaign which is about to hit the one million mark but the African Union has voted in favour of pulling out of the Rome Statute which founded the ICC because they say Africans are the only ones who are presented to this court and found guilty. Tutu asks a strong question: Who will prevent another genocide?
A history of justice delayed and denied
But does Kenya deliver on justice?
Does Kenya? In Kenya today it is not only victims of the 2007 violence that have not seen justice but many people who were outspoken and were killed: Pio Gama Pinto, Tom Joseph Mboya, J M Kariuki, Bishop Kipsang Alexander Muge, Journalist Julie Ward, Masinde Muliro, Karimi Nduthu, Fr. Kaiser, Many missionaries, the list is endless. There are also many disappeared young people. So the Kenyan Parliament had recourse to the ICC so that justice could be delivered. At that time the slogan was: Don't be vague go to Hague. Rhyme and reason at play.
Even more: The Kenyan Constitution recognises that the ICC is a Kenyan court.
Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto cases before the ICC are not affected by this withdrawal
Kenya's foreign Minister Amina Mohamed kept double speak going but everyone knew that Kenya was the main reason why many African nations were going to pull out of the ICC or at least pass the resolution to. Foreign Affairs office in Kenya was candid if contradictory. "Which other Head of State is sued in office?" Amina asked. And now there is great jubilation. They are happy. It has passed, this resolution voted by countries that were not even members to the treaty like Sudan. Next is to ask for a deferal for Kenyan cases.
Kibaki former president of Kenya is delighted. When Mwai Kibaki was president, he made big efforts to get African states to see that Kenya could not afford this ICC case. He made trips himself regarding this. Earlier the shuttle diplomacy in which Kalonzo Musyoka went round Africa meeting heads of state to ask them to reject this case was spoken about by all.
The late Colonel Muammar Gaddafi has won too. He had promised to see to it that this strategy worked for Afrika against this Western court thing. Well you see we have everything we need. The naysayers know we have: Sharia Law, The African Human and People's Rights Court and each their own laws. We are fine. In case we have some disputes that would lead us to needing to persecute for crimes against humanity our own governments will help us to sue them for their excesses. They will sue themselves.
There are developed courts in the Middle East that handle international problems. They are improving and growing. We can do without the West and all its empty promises, its empty pomps. We are as safe as can be because there are no problems we cannot handle whilst fighting terror with reason. There is no need to be afraid. USA has not signed the Rome Statute...rather signed and unsigned. Russia too and China! Hurrah we are super and big on human rights. We can make it.
But this since this passing of the resolution does not mean the case of Uhuru Kenyatta (President), William Ruto (Vice- President) and Sang, a journalist brought before the ICC are ended, they will go on and ask for these cases to be deferred. You see there is no such a thing as justice delayed. And never, ever denied. They would like to defer the cases for good reasons. To serve their country in their respective offices to which they were elected. But the crimes they said earlier had nothing to do with the elections.
The president in all integrity told the people that he and his Deputy if elected would present themselves before the ICC and follow due process. It was as good as a campaign promise. It is forgotten. A president is too busy to be away for such small matters. He was not summoned as a President, now he is one. What's the bother? Kenya needs protection as in its position without the President at home there is a risk to international peace. Did you not see the recent terror attack?
Everyone knows that Kenya is the island of peace and justice that protects all neighbouring countries from crumbling. It protects Somalia and that is why Somalia is such a peaceful land. Kenya vanquishes Al Shabaab. That is why terror attacks cannot happen with a sitting president at home. Even Obama and Gordon Brown know that. They saw terror at Westgate happen in Nairobi. People died. The President needs to be in the country full time for his full time job in protection of The human and people's rights of Africa.