News / Africa

Kenya Court to Rule on ICC Extradition Request

Defense attorney Kibe Mungai (l) and Walter Barasa (r) (Credit- James Shimanyula)
Defense attorney Kibe Mungai (l) and Walter Barasa (r) (Credit- James Shimanyula)
Peter Clottey
A Kenyan court plans to rule Friday on the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) extradition request for activist Walter Barasa.  The Hague-based court accuses him of interfering with witnesses. Barasa denies the accusation as without merit.

“I’m comfortable, because I deny allegations leveled against me, and much of it my lawyer has it and will [introduce] it in due course,” said Barasa.

The ICC issued an arrest warrant against Barasa, but he challenged the extradition order in a Kenyan court.

Barasa’s defense attorney Kibe Mungai accused the ICC of undermining the country’s constitution.  He says, for example, his case should be tried in Kenyan courts, and also that the ICC move violates his constitutional rights to see evidence against him.  The Kenyan Office of the Prosecutor says he can only see the information if he cooperates with the international court.

“Mr. Barasa wants the court to declare that the government of Kenya cannot oblige the request by the ICC,” said Mungai. “If he succeeds, that is the end of the story. If he also succeeds on the other part that the trial should be in Kenya, then the issue of warrant comes to an end. If he does not succeed then he may be surrendered in due cause to the ICC.”

Mungai says if the court upholds Kenya’s constitution, his client would not be subjected to extradition or to arrest by the ICC.   He said both the ICC and Kenya erred in issuing a warrant for Barasa.

“Our chances are good,” said Mungai. “The ICC has been acting illegally in this matter and the state [Kenya] has misinterpreted the law in issuing the request for surrender.”

The ICC accused Barasa of bribing witnesses in the trial of Kenya’s deputy President William Ruto. The court accuses Mr. Ruto and President Uhuru Kenyatta of playing a key role in the country’s 2007-2008 post-election violence that left about 1,300 people dead and tens of thousands internally displaced. Barasa denies the ICC charges.

Defense attorney Mungai says the ICC’s arrest warrant against Barasa flouts Kenya’s constitution.

“Under the laws of Kenya to implement the Rome Statute [establishing the court], the trial for those offenses is supposed to be in Kenya and even after issuing the warrant and knowing that Kenya is a signatory state, they tried to arrest Mr. Barasa unlawfully,” said Mungai. “All these issues will be raised in the Kenyan court [Friday and] I am confident that we shall succeed.”

In a related matter, the Kenyan Daily Nation newspaper quotes the ICC coordinator for Kenya and Uganda, as saying that Kenya could try Barasa if the country’s courts are equipped to handle the case.
Clottey interview with Kibe Mungai, defense attorney
Clottey interview with Kibe Mungai, defense attorneyi
|| 0:00:00

You May Like

Video Russia’s Syrian Escalation Tests Obama’s Crisis Response

Critics once again question whether president has been slow to act on Syrian conflict, thus creating opening for powers like Russia More

Ancient African DNA Shows Mass Migration Back Into Africa

First genetic analysis of ancient human remains in Africa suggests massive migration from north around time of Egyptian empire More

NASA: Pluto Has Blue Sky

New photos also reveal the presence of water ice More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Velapi Ngwenya
October 18, 2013 9:33 AM
Now Ecoman dont be economical with the truth, there were approximately 20,000 people who lost their lives in a Southern African country in the 1980's. So before you "rock n roll" with statements, please check out the real facts.

by: Ecoman from: Nigeria
October 18, 2013 4:40 AM
Why has the ICC not arrested former U.S. President George W. Bush for crimes against humanity in Iraq? Or is it only African leaders that commit war crimes and crimes against humanity? A biased and racial ICC.

by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
October 17, 2013 10:29 PM
In the summit last week in Ethiopia all African leaders exclusively expressed that ICC's targeting black African leaders is politically motivated. Unmistakeably obvious now that ICC persecutors are behaving as if they have dictatorial mandate to indict any black leader, journalist, activist or poor farmer for a mere dubious crime. This kind of attitude has to be stopped.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugeesi
Henry Ridgwell
October 08, 2015 8:02 PM
Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugees

Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Iraqi-Kurdish Teachers Vow to Continue Protest

Sixteen people were injured when police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse teachers and other public employees who took to the streets in Iraq’s Kurdish north, demanding their salaries from the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG). VOA’s Dilshad Anwar, in Sulaimaniya, caught up with protesting teachers who say they have not been paid for three months. Parke Brewer narrates his report.

Video Syrian Village Community Faces Double Displacement in Lebanon

Driven by war from their village in southwestern Syria, a group of families found shelter in Lebanon, resettling en masse in a half-built university to form one of the biggest settlements of its kind in Lebanon. Three years later, however, they now face being kicked out and dispersed in a country where finding shelter as a refugee can be especially tough. John Owens has more for VOA from the city of Saida, also known as Sidon.

Video Bat Colony: Unusual Tourist Attraction in Texas

The action hero Batman might be everyone’s favorite but real bats hardly get that kind of adoration. Put more than a million of these creatures of the night together and it only evokes images of horror. Sarah Zaman visited the largest urban bat colony in North America to see just how well bat and human get along with each other.

Video Device Shows Promise of Stopping Motion Sickness

It’s a sickening feeling — the dizziness, nausea and vomiting that comes with motion sickness. But a device now being developed could stop motion sickness by suppressing certain signals in the brain. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Making a Mint

While apples, corn, and cranberries top the list of fall produce in the US, it’s also the time to harvest gum, candy, and toothpaste—or at least the oil that makes them minty fresh. Erika Celeste reports from South Bend, Indiana on the mint harvest.

Video Activists Decry Lagos Slum Demolition

Acting on a court order, authorities in Nigeria demolished a slum last month in the commercial capital, Lagos. But human rights activists say the order was illegal, and the community was razed to make way for a government housing project. Chris Stein has more from Lagos.

Video TPP Agreed, But Faces Stiff Opposition

President Barack Obama promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Tuesday, one day after 12 Pacific Rim nations reached the free trade deal in Atlanta. The controversial pact that would involve about 40 percent of global trade still needs approval by lawmakers in respective countries. Zlatica Hoke reports Obama is facing strong opposition to the deal, including from members of his own party.

Video Ukranian Artist Portrays Putin in an Unusual Way

As Russian President Vladimir Putin was addressing the United Nations in New York last month, he was also being featured in an art exhibition in Washington. It’s not a flattering exhibit. It’s done by a Ukrainian artist in a unique medium. And its creator says it’s not only a work of art - it’s a political statement. VOA’s Tetiana Kharchenko has more.

Video Nano-tech Filter Cleans Dirty Water

Access to clean water is a problem for hundreds of millions of people around the world. Now, a scientist and chemical engineer in Tanzania (in East Africa) is working to change that by creating an innovative water filter that makes dirty water safe. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.

Video Demand Rising for Organic Produce in Cambodia

In Cambodia, where rice has long been the main cash crop, farmers are being encouraged to turn to vegetables to satisfy the growing demand for locally produced organic farm products. Daniel de Carteret has more from Phnom Penh.

Video Botanists Grow Furniture, with Pruning Shears

For something a bit out of the ordinary to furnish your home, why not consider wooden chairs, crafted by nature, with a little help from some British botanists with an eye for design. VOA’s Jessica Berman reports.

VOA Blogs