The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) joins Kenyans of all walks of life to rejoice the collapse of cases against the Deputy President, H.E. William Samoei Ruto and his co-accused, radio journalist, Joshua Arap Sang at the International Criminal Court in The Hague yesterday.
In an express Note Verbale to the President of the Republic of Kenya last evening, the IGAD Executive Secretary, Ambassador (Eng.) Mahboub Maalim wrote, in part:
“We join you, your government and the people of Kenya to celebrate the termination of the remaining cases at the International Criminal Court (ICC). The country in particular and the region at large can now focus on more importantand urgent development matters including reconciliation, healing and post conflict reconstruction.”
It would be recalled that IGAD had condemned the way the ICC had handled the Kenyan cases from the beginning. During a press conference held in Nairobi on 22nd March 2011, Amb Mahboub stated clearly IGAD’s position on the deferral request of the ICC cases by Kenya pointing out that the trials would “weaken the country and weaken the region”.
On numerous subsequent occasions, IGAD has continued to call for the withdrawal of the remaining charges against Deputy President Ruto and journalist Arap Sang. The regional organization has also been instrumental in rallying governments in the region through the African Union to demonstrate their solidarity, particularly against ICC ‘targeting’ leaders while still in office.