Civil society faults State over TJRC report

Kenya: Civil society organisations have strongly criticised the Jubilee administration for failing to implement the Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) report, one year after its submission.

The organisations faulted the Government for flouting the TJRC Act and said there is lack of political will to implement the report that indicted powerful figures in both the current and former regimes.

“The TJRC Act had clear and tight timelines,” noted Programme Advisor for Kenyans for Peace with Truth and Justice Njonjo Mue.

“It’s exactly one year since the report was handed over to President Uhuru Kenyatta but nothing seems to be happening,” Mr Mue said.

Under the TJRC Act, the implementation of the report should have begun within six months after the publication of the final report. The six months lapsed in November last year.

According to the Act, the Government should by now have set up an implementation mechanism with a committee to monitor the process and report to Parliament on quarterly basis.

However, instead of spearheading the implementation, the National Assembly amended the Act, placing the explosive report at the mercy of lawmakers.

But speaking yesterday in Nairobi, the civil society organisations led by the International Centre for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) cautioned Parliament against interfering with the content of the report.

“It would be hugely regrettable if the National Assembly were to alter the report in any way,” cautioned ICTJ Kenya head Christopher Gitari.

He added: “...given the potentially incriminatory information contained in the report, it is not surprising that some powerful actors would want to tamper with the report or have it rejected entirely.”

They maintained that Parliament has no authority to amend a report of an independent commission.