ICC is still hunting its ghosts in Kenya over post election violence.For five years, the yoke of the International Criminal Court charges that have been hanging over a journalist’s head.
Journalist Walter Barasa is apparently still resisting arrest and surrender to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for allegedly corruptly influencing witnesses.
Ironically, in March this year, he had declared himself ready to face the ICC in order to clear his name.“I am not even able to pay rent because nobody is ready to employ me. In Western Kenya where I come from, I am seen as a Jubilee agent,” he revealed in an interview.
However he has currently challenged, in the Court of Appeal, the decision by the High Court allowing Kenyan authorities to enforce an arrest warrant issued against him by The Hague-based ICC.Do you think Barasa stands a chance with the appeal?
The matter was formally mentioned before a three-member appellate bench and the parties were directed to take hearing dates on priority basis.
The Eldoret-based scribe is facing the grim reality of three criminal charges after the High Court flatly rejected his application to quash the impending extradition proceedings that may pave way for his arrest and surrender.
ICC’s judge Cuno Tarfusser, of Pre-Trial Chamber II, issued the arrest warrant on August 2, 2013 following a request by chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda. Justice Richard Mwongo had allowed the then Interior minister to enforce it.
Former Interior Cabinet secretary Joseph ole Lenku had forwarded the formal request by The Hague-based court to then Chief Justice, Willy Mutunga, on October 4, 2013.
Barasa is specifically accused of corruptly influencing the first prosecution witness in the trial of Deputy President William Ruto and radio presenter Joshua arap Sang coded witness P-0536 by offering her and her husband Sh1.4 million to withdraw her testimony.
The journalist is alleged to have attempted to induce her to meet him near Kampala in Uganda between May 20 and July 25, 2013.
In his petition dated October 8, 2013 the aggrieved journalist had argued that the alleged offences facing him in The Hague subverting the administration of justice can be tried locally and there are no sufficient grounds for his arrest and extradition to a foreign land where his rights and freedoms are not guaranteed.
In his contested ruling, Justice Mwongo said it was common ground that Barasa was an intermediary of the ICC when it was investigating the infamous post-election violence.