Witness names ODM in post-poll chaos

By The Standard On Sunday Reporter

The second witness against Deputy President William Ruto at the International Criminal Court (ICC) has implicated ODM in the violence that engulfed the country after the disputed 2007 presidential election results.

The witness, The Standard on Sunday investigations reveal, claims ODM bankrolled the youths who went on a killing spree; raping women and evicting people from their homes in the Rift Valley.

The witness does not implicate former Prime Minister Raila Odinga or former ODM Pentagon officials in his statement.

“He says ODM gave out money that was used to pay the youths who caused turmoil,” confided a source familiar with the ICC investigations.

“But he has not mentioned Raila directly in relation to the violence.”

However, sources have indicated that during the testimony of the second witness, Raila’s name and the names of former ODM top brass including Musalia Mudavadi, Najib Balala, Henry Kosgey and Sally Kosgei could feature.

A report authoured by Kenya National Commission of Human Rights (KNCHR) and believed to have been heavily relied on by former ICC chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo mentioned many top ODM and PNU officials in connection to the violence.

Among those named in the KNCHR report tittled On the Brink of the Precipice: A Human Rights Account of Kenya’s Post-2007 Election Violence were Mr Ruto, Mr Balala, Mr Kosgey and Sally Kosgei.

The witness claims that he has evidence that the Orange party gave out large sums of money to Mr Ruto which was withdrawn from a local bank and then distributed to the youth.

The witness is expected to take to the witness stand later next week after the conclusion of the testimony of the first prosecution witness only known as 536.

And unlike the first witness who did not implicate radio journalist Joshua arap Sang in her testimony, the second prosecution witness claims he has evidence Sang attended planning meetings.

Mr Ruto’s defence team led by Karim Khan is preparing to begin cross-examining the first witness from tomorrow.

Sources indicated that the team has identified many fault lines in the woman’s testimony and is waiting to poke holes into her testimony.

“She told so many lies. That’s why Khan was insisting she should be warned that is criminal to lie in court,” said a source.

The team plans to rebut her testimony from a statement by her former employer, a prominent politician in the Rift Valley, who has disowned her as having resigned from his home way back before the 2007 elections.

“The woman resigned in 2000. This was exactly 7 years before the post election violence,” added the source.

The witness is said to have testified about planning meetings allegedly attended by Mr Ruto in the politician’s home in private sessions Tuesday.

“He (the politician) has disowned her. Even her former supervisor has given a payroll of when she was paid last,” said our source.

On Tuesday, Khan persuaded the judges to inform the witness of the consequences of telling lies before the ICC.

Presiding Judge Chile Eboi-Osuji maintained that the witness had been briefed by the Victims and Witnesses Unit, insisting that such warning in court would cause an intimidating atmosphere for the witness.