By Wahome Thuku
Speaking at the International Criminal Court ( ICC) Trial Chamber V status conference on the second Kenya case at The Hague, The Netherlands, Muthaura’s lawyer, Karim Khan told the judges his client, who was seated next to him, did not want any further delays to the impending trial.
Muthaura’s position differed sharply with that of Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru, the ICC Prosecutor’s office, and the suspects in the first Kenya case, Eldoret North MP, William Ruto, and radio executive Joshua arap Sang.
All four prefer that the trials begin after the elections in March for different reasons. Ruto and Uhuru have insisted they will be on the presidential ballot, while the court has previously said Kenya’s elections have no bearing on its decisions.
The Trial Chamber V judges will publish their ruling on July 13 on the start date for the trials as well as other issues discussed at the status conferences.
While Uhuru has political considerations, Muthaura, who retired early this year after 30 years in the Civil Service, wants the ICC case off his back, as quickly as possible for him to carry on with his private life.
Khan and Stephen Kay (Uhuru’s lawyer) showed their differences over the dates, as the prosecution, led by the incoming Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, said that they would be calling between 25 and 35 witnesses to testify against the two.
scope for disclosure
The status conference was the second after a similar one held on Monday for Ruto and Sang.
They are provided for under Article 64(3) of the Rome Statute for the court and the parties to set a trial date, confer on the necessary procedure for fair and expeditious trials, determine the language to be used in the proceedings, and agree on a timetable and scope for disclosure of documents and information for adequate preparation for the case.
Sang and Muthaura attended their proceedings. Uhuru and Ruto, who are now busy with their presidential campaigns, left the sessions to their lawyers.