The International Criminal Court dismissed its case against Kenya’s deputy president, William Ruto, and a local radio director this week for their alleged roles in 2007-2008 post-election violence. Ruto told reporters in Nairobi Friday that the ruling was proof of his innocence.
Flanked by his wife, mother, and children, Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto addressed journalists.
“I can confirm to you that I know of nobody or group of people or network of individuals who planned violence against anyone. I can also confirm to you that I attended no fundraising or any form of raising money to buy anything to harm anybody,” he said.
The ICC charged Ruto in 2012 with three counts of crimes against humanity for his alleged role in orchestrating violence that followed the 2007 election. More than 1,100 people were killed and 600,000 displaced.
FILE - Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto speaks to his attorney at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Sept. 10, 2013.
On Tuesday, the judges dismissed the case against Ruto and a local radio director, Joshua Arap Sang, for lack of evidence.
In a written statement Wednesday, ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said there had been “deliberate and concerted efforts to derail this case through witness interference.” She said 17 witnesses withdrew their cooperation after “intimidation, social isolation and threats.”
FILE - Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda in the courtroom of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Sept. 29, 2015.
Ruto took no questions from reporters Friday but he maintains his innocence.
“I have searched my conscience and my soul and I have chosen that all those who gave false testimony against me I have chosen to forgive them. And it is my prayer that the same God who has vindicated me will help them come to terms with their acts,” he said.
Ruto pledged support from the government for victims of the 2007-2008 post-election violence.
The ICC terminated a separate case against Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta last year for his alleged role in the post-election violence. Prosecutors alleged witness tampering and intimidation in that case as well.