Monday, September 16, 2013
Letter to the President of the International Criminal Court over the Case of The Prosecutor v. William Samoei Ruto and Joshua Arap Sang
Bakampa Brian Baryaguma,
c/o Barya, Byamugisha & Co. Advocates,
Colline House, 1st Floor, Middle Tower,
Plot 4, Pilkington Rd,
P.O. Box 12031, Kampala-Uganda
Monday, 16 September, 2013
INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT,
P.O. BOX 19519,
Re: Situation in the Republic of Kenya; The Prosecutor v. William Samoei Ruto and Joshua Arap Sang
It is on rare occasions that a humble member of the global community writes to his superiors. When that happens, then clearly the matter must be one of great significance, at least to the citizen, such that it would deserve the attention of the leaders concerned.
First and foremost, I would like to thank the International Criminal Court (ICC) for a job well done, of delivering international justice. For the 11 years that the Court has been in existence, since 1 July, 2002 when the Rome Statute of the International Court entered into force, the world has seen an increasing number of perpetrators of crimes of grave international concern being brought to book and face justice. This high level of accountability sets the pace for attainment of global peace, order, security and respect for human rights. Thank you very much for leading the way in this endeavour.
Let me now proceed to addressing the purpose of writing this letter. I have learnt from the media that the governments of the states of East Africa namely, Uganda, Tanzania, and Rwanda, have written to this Court, asking that it discontinues its proceedings in the trial of Kenyan duo, Deputy President, Mr William Samoei Ruto and journalist, Mr. Joshua Arap Sang. That this request follows developments in Kenya, where Parliament has overwhelmingly decided to support a motion seeking to withdraw the country’s membership as a State Party to the Rome Statute, unless the ICC allows to refer back this case for trial by a domestic court/tribunal.
Your Excellency, I humbly suggest that this Court ignores this request with all the contempt it deserves. The world may recall that the ICC took over this case after the Kenyan government failed to establish the claimed courts/tribunals, to the detrimental of justice for the victims of the 2007-2008 electoral violence. Consequently, the ICC remained the only avenue through which the quest for justice would be achieved and therefore, the Court should not be incited to sabotage this process. What matters is that the case, is properly before this Court and that the Court can be trusted by all parties concerned to deliver substantive justice, in a fair, impartial and objective manner. Once these cardinal tests are satisfied, like I believe they are in the instant case, any flimsy rumblings, such as the unfortunate developments in this particular case bordering on blackmail, should be summarily dismissed. I so move.
Last but not least, allow me to say that we in Africa are vigorously searching for sanity in leadership. It is unfortunate that our leaders wantonly abuse our human rights and there is rampant misuse of political and economic power, in an arbitrary, oppressive and repressive manner, all for the personal benefit of those in authority. Thus, Africa is yearning for allies to solve this problem and as far as we are concerned, the ICC is a reliable partner in this noble cause, whereby it promotes personal accountability for all excesses that occur, by apprehending the culprits. This should serve as a warning to all rogue leaders everywhere, who trample upon people’s human rights, that they are being watched and will surely be brought to justice, no matter how powerful they may be.
Now, it is alleged by some of our leaders that the ICC was designed for Africa, to operate as an avenue for neo-colonialism and Western domination. If this accusation is true, then it would be really absurd. Personally, however, I would like to give the Court the benefit of doubt, trusting that it is well intentioned and that sooner than later, it will ably dispel this accusation, by demonstrating that it is not merely a racist court, but a truly international court, capable of holding other offenders elsewhere accountable.
Bakampa Brian Baryaguma
Web Address: www.bbbakampa.blogspot.com
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c.c. The Prosecutor, ICC
c.c. The Registrar, ICC