Crime and Punishment

The existing international system is undemocratic and unfair. Africa’s non-representation in the Councils and Chambers of international decision-making in the past was always explained in terms of our lack of sovereign independence. This claim is no longer valid.
We call for the reform of the inherited global governance institutions. We call, especially, for the reform of the United Nations and its Security Council. — President of Nigeria, speech to Kenyan parliament, 06-09-13

This month, the Kenyan par­lia­ment accept­ed a motion to with­draw from the Inter­na­tion­al Crim­i­nal Court (ICC). 15 years ago, a con­fer­ence of 160 states adopt­ed the “Rome Statute of the Inter­na­tion­al Crim­i­nal Court”. This treaty was the basis for the ICC; a court that pros­e­cutes crimes of con­cern to the inter­na­tion­al com­mu­ni­ty as a whole: geno­cide, crimes against human­i­ty, war crimes and the crime of aggres­sion. A lot of coun­tries are mem­bers of the Rome Statute, but the USA and Rus­sia are not, for instance. Until now, the ICC has inves­ti­gat­ed cas­es from 8 coun­tries: Ugan­da, DR Con­go, Cen­tral African Repub­lic, Mali, Kenya, Côte d’Ivoire, Sudan and Libia.

The fact that only African sit­u­a­tions are pros­e­cut­ed has led African lead­ers, assem­bled in the African Union, to doubt the impar­tial­i­ty of the court. Their opin­ion is that the ICC was a nice idea, but that it is now abused by pow­er­ful nations to install lead­ers that they pre­fer in Africa.

Ruto & Kenyatta

William Ruto & Uhu­ru Kenyatta

In the mean­time, the case against pres­i­dent Keny­at­ta and vice-pres­i­dent Ruto goes on as planned. The first wit­ness against Ruto has tes­ti­fied in ‘Hague’. This quote from Keny­at­ta is a good illus­tra­tion of the dra­ma and reli­gious zeal that char­ac­ter­ize the way they han­dle their trials:

The whole world is full of chal­lenges, but we believe that even though there are chal­lenges ahead of us, we know through your prayers we will sur­mount them.

We have also had a con­fronta­tion with crime in Kenya. On the fatal morn­ing, the clear view was the rea­son that we drove a bit out of town, along a qui­et but not desert­ed tar­mac. When we had made some pic­tures and want­ed to dri­ve off, three men came to us. Their machete con­vinced us quick­ly to give every­thing we had on us, and off they were, with our motor bike. We quick­ly got a lift to town. The only injury we sus­tained was a cut on Freddy’s fore­head. Today, a week after the rob­bery, the stitch­es have been removed.

It was a bizarre expe­ri­ence that still gives me a feel­ing of inse­cu­ri­ty. The good news of today is that the cam­era was found, and that the police is going to fol­low that trace to try and find the rob­bers. The SD card was removed, so we lost the pic­tures of that morn­ing. Which is a pity because they were beau­ti­ful pic­tures of Mount Kenya. But I don’t think we will try to shoot them again at that place…