News / Africa

Kenya Truth Commission Report Links Leaders to Abuses

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta inspects the honor guard before the opening of the 11th Parliament at the National Assembly Chamber in the capital Nairobi, Apr. 16, 2013.
Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta inspects the honor guard before the opening of the 11th Parliament at the National Assembly Chamber in the capital Nairobi, Apr. 16, 2013.
Gabe Joselow
A long-awaited report from Kenya’s Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) has linked several of Kenya’s leaders, including current President Uhuru Kenyatta, to abuses committed throughout the country’s history.  The commission has called for further investigation of those responsible for these crimes in an effort to bring closure.
 
After five years of research based on over 40,000 statements and 600 hearings across the country, the TJRC late Tuesday handed over its final report to President Kenyatta.
 
Formed in the aftermath of the 2007-2008 post-election violence, the TJRC was tasked with investigating human rights abuses committed by the state since Kenya’s independence in 1963.
 
Kenyatta and his deputy, William Ruto, are both mentioned in the report, accused of inciting and financing the violence five years ago.  But the TJRC recommends no further action against the two, as they are already facing trial at the International Criminal Court on the same charges.
 
TJRC chairman Bethuel Kiplagat says the report aims to help the country move beyond the mistakes of the past.
 
“The whole purpose of the Truth, Justice, Reconciliation Commission is to find closure.  A closure to issues related to violations, gross violations of human rights, murders, rape, abduction, marginalization, whatever," he said.
 
Numerous public figures named

The report names hundreds of public figures accused of involvement in abuses ranging from economic crimes to political assassinations.
 
Chairman Kiplagat himself is named in the report for his alleged role in the 1984 “Wagalla Massacre” in which hundreds or possibly thousands of ethnic Somalis were killed by government forces at an airstrip in the northeast of the country.
 
Kiplagat, who at the time served in the government of President Daniel arap Moi, says he is willing to cooperate with any possible investigation.
 
“These are allegations, as far as I’m concerned, and though I am named, it says that it requires some investigation and this is very good, this is part of our laws, so I would be more than ready and willing for anyone to carry out investigation on those issues that have been raised," he said. 
 
The report notes that Kenya has made progress on many of the issues examined by the commission since it began its work, including the enactment of a new constitution that strives for more equal distribution of resources, and the formation of an anti-corruption commission.
 
Kiplagat says these institutions will help to implement the commission’s recommendations.
 
"If you want further investigation, you don’t do it, you ask the public prosecution to carry on with the investigation.  If there is an issue on land that needs to be further dealt with, you take it to the commissioner of land.  Let them do it, and hopefully, closure," he said. 
 
The TJRC calls for further action including an apology from the current government for the abuses committed in the past, and the establishment of a nearly $6 million (500 million Shilling) fund for reparations.

You May Like

UN: 1 Million Somalis at Risk of Hunger

Group warns region is in dire need of humanitarian aid, with at least 200,000 children under age of five acutely malnourished as drought hits southern, central part of nation More

Human Rights Groups Allege Supression of Freedoms in Thailand

Thailand’s military, police have suppressed release of independent report assessing human rights in kingdom during first 100 days of latest coup More

Jennifer Lawrence Contacts FBI After Nude Photos Hacked

'Silver Linings Playbook' actress' photos were posted on image-sharing forum 4chan; Federal Bureau of Investigations is looking into matter More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearancei
X
Elizabeth Lee
September 02, 2014 8:57 PM
Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearance

Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Experts See Rise of ISIS as Significant Development

The Islamic State’s rise seems sudden. It caught the U.S. by surprise this summer when it captured large portions of northern Iraq and spread its wings in neighboring Syria. But many analysts contend that the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years. VOA's Jela de Franceschi takes a closer look at the rise of ISIS and its implications for the Middle East and beyond.
Video

Video Israel Concerned Over Syrian Rebels in Golan

Israeli officials are following with concern the recent fighting between Syrian rebels and government forces near the contested Golan Heights. Forty-four U.N. peacekeepers from Fiji have been seized by Syrian Islamist rebels and the clashes occasionally have spilled into Israel. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.

AppleAndroid