Month: September 2013

Tribute to archbishop (rtd) David M Gitari

Archbishop (rtd) David M Gitari @76
I do pay tribute to my great friend, today rested and joined the church militant!
I grieve his death and pray for the family that he loved , the church he grew and the community cherished.
He always remained focused on his call to be a priest, but a prophet when called upon!
The Lord he served has plucked him, into the crowd of witnesses up above.

“There is nothing that can replace the absence of someone dear to us, and one should not even attempt to do so.
One must simply hold out and endure it. At first that sounds very hard, but at the same time it is also a great comfort.
For to the extent the emptiness truly remains unfilled one remains connected to the other person through it.
It is wrong to say that God fills the emptiness. God in no way fills it but much more leaves it precisely unfilled and thus helps us preserve — even in pain — the authentic relationship. Further more, the more beautiful and full the remembrances, the more difficult the separation.
But gratitude transforms the torment of memory into silent joy. One bears what was lovely in the past not as a thorn but as a precious gift deep within, a hidden treasure of which one can always be certain.” (― Dietrich Bonhoeffer)

Blessed be the name of The Lord.

Rev. Canon Francis Omondi.
30 September 2013

Al-Shabaab attacks: how do we counter extremism

I do agree with St Augustine when he said; “Never judge a philosophy by its abuse” It a clear warning for us not to judge Islam on the grounds of the recent attacks by the Al-shabaab.

Even so there is a question that lingers on the minds, lips and hearts of many Kenyans and the world: why did al-Shabaab unleash terror of this scale in the name of Islam? The attack without doubt is branding Islam as violent, despite the protestation of Muslim leaders in this country in denouncing these terror activities.

Despite the clear testimony of harmonious existence and prevailing peace across religious divide in this country, which we must maintain by all means, we are puzzled at the unfolding events that are shaping our perception of our Muslim neighbours.

We have through these events seen a new face of Islam that petrifies as much as it confuses us. How do we reconcile the contradiction of a peaceful Islam we have known and the violent Islam we have just seen?

It has been a welcome thought to see Muslim leaders strongly condemning the terror attack by the Al-Shabaab, branding them barbaric terrorists who do not represent the religion or its faithful.

The Secretary-General of the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims, Adan Wachu, said the wanton and indiscriminate killing of innocent men, women and children goes against all Islamic teachings and tenets.

Everyone would agree with Al Amin Kimathi, convenor of the National Muslim Human Rights Forum, who invited the government to pursue the terrorists robustly, terming their actions indefensible and reprehensible.

Obviously, there was broad condemnation of this heinous attack that seems to have targeted non-Muslims for harm. Among others Ustadh Juma Ngao, of the Kenya Muslim National Advisory Council, National Muslim Leaders’ Forum Vice Chair Yusuf Murigu, Fazul Mahamed of the Association of Muslim Organisations of Kenya, Sheikh Khalfan Khamis of Majlis Ulamaa Kenya and Abdul Bary Hamid, Jamia Mosque’s Secretary General.
westgate Mall attacked !
It will be difficult though, to shake off the fact that the Al-shabaab, Islamic militia from Somalia launched the attack against an apostate state and infidels. During the attacks the Al shabaab reportedly, freed Muslims and singled out non-Muslims for slaughter. This has been roundly dismissed by leaders of major Muslim organisations in Kenya who, said the Somali-based militia, were trying to spark sectarian conflict between Kenyans of different faiths by claiming they are acting on behalf of Muslims and Islam.

This denial contradicts the view of Al Jazeera’s Hamza Mohamed, who interviewed al-Shabab’s spokesman for military operations, Sheikh Abulaziz Abu Muscab:

“Al Jazeera: Al-Shabab claims to work to protect Muslims and Somalis in particular. Some of the people killed in this attack suggests otherwise.

Sheikh Abdulaziz: History supports our claim. We are the only ones protecting Somalis and Somalia. We are the only group fighting Somalia’s historic enemies. We are the only one who can say ‘no’ to Somalis’ enemies.
On the loss of lives, there were Kenyan soldiers firing back at our fighters. There was an exchange of gunfire. There is no evidence it was our bullets that killed them. We released all Muslims when we took control of the mall. Witnesses have backed us on this….”

Sheikh Abdulaziz’s comment is confirmed by the testimony of those who emerged from the ordeal. One such was Fiona Herbert a 34-year-old Briton, who lives in Kenya, who described chaotic scenes as she grabbed her baby son and darted out of the ground-floor cafe.

Hiding in an unlit cupboard, Herbert and others softly keyed text messages to their loved ones. Amid reports that gunmen were singling out non-Muslims, some even tried to memorise Quranic prayers in order to pass themselves off as adherents.

“There was no way I could learn an Arabic phrase and get away with being Muslim,” said Herbert, a child psychologist. “I’m ginger-haired and I’ve got a ginger baby. If they’d got into the shop then we were both dead.”

“What they are doing is preposterous and pure terrorism,” she said. “They were asking questions about the Quran. Even if people were Muslim, they could still get the wrong answer and be killed. Saying you were Muslim was not foolproof, it was just desperate people, grasping at straws.”

Al Ashabaab is recruiting Kenyans

Al-Shabaab is drawing recruits throughout the country beyond the traditionally expected Somali community. In the Majengo slums, we have seen small mosques popping up between corrugated shacks which form the main cells for recruitment. In a place where most people don’t have work, local mosques often ease financial hardship, subsidizing weddings and offering free burials for the dead, said Robert Ochona, a local radio journalist.

Those converting to Islam through these cells will surely embrace the radical, extremist Islam as taught by al Shabaab. Collins Andago, a 25-year-old car washer in Majengo, narrates how his brother, Musa Andago 19, in 2011 became a convert to Islam and then suddenly disappeared. Collins reported his brother to Kenya’s counter-terrorism police, who tracked him to Mombasa, where he and another friend were trying to get to Somalia. The friend made it to Somalia, but Musa returned.

Collins Andago estimates that more than 100 young men from Majengo have headed to Somalia over the past couple of years. “They think if you fight Jihad you will go to heaven,” he says. “They go and don’t come back.”

Peter Wonacott a reporter with The Wall Street Journal narrated the sad story of how Islamic militants came for Qassim Mohamed. “The Somali self-defense coach couldn’t defend himself. The men from al-Shabaab, beat the karate instructor as they tried to recruit him. They slammed rifle butts into his chest and threatened to kill his family. Mr. Mohamed didn’t dare raise a fist. Instead, family members paid bribes for his release and he fled the capital Mogadishu to Kenya in 2009.”

Mr. Mohamed still lives under the haunting shadow of the al-Shabaab.
“Group members have dropped by the family home in Mogadishu to ask where he is. His father would profess not to know. In April, a group of three men shot and killed his father as he walked home from the mosque,” Mr. Mohamed said.

“If you try to defend yourself, you will die,” said Mr. Mohamed, who counsels other Somalis against extremism as part of a new youth mentor program in Eastleigh, outside Nairobi. “I escaped, started a new life, but al-Shabaab will always be behind me.” The choice for al-Shabaab is simple, he says. “To be with them. Or to die.”

It has been reported that five Kenyan youths from Mombasa were arrested on their way to join the al Shabaab in Somalia on 21 September 2013. Multiple police sources said the five, who come from Kisauni and Majengo, were arrested in Kismayu by Somalia authorities and handed over to Kenya security agencies in Garissa town.

A family member of one of the suspects said he disappeared two weeks ago after he was ‘brainwashed’ and recruited into al Shabaab. He is said to have started attending prayers at the Masjid Musa mosque in Majengo two months ago with his colleagues. The mosque is linked with slain Muslim cleric Sheikh Aboud Rogo.

Rogo had used the mosque as a venue to spread extremist messages that were in line with al Shabaab doctrines and ideology. He is said to have had ties with the militia group and gave them financial, material, logistical and technical support.

Reports indicate the family had informed a human rights group in Mombasa about the disappearance but were directed to report to security agencies.
They however did not make reports for fear of victimisation.
How do we face this challenge?

At this point it is vital that religious leaders work together to avoid religious violence on the account of this attack. Adan Wachu is right when he said; “We, the religious leaders, are engaged in robust dialogue to ensure that these relations are not just maintained but also made stronger. We are convinced beyond doubt that the attempt to sow seeds of discord between Muslims and Christians will fail miserably and that we shall remain united.”

There no suggestion, however, that the genesis of this crisis has any inter-religious ascent. The problem is entirely within Islam and its interpretation and practice of religion.

I would propose that there should be more dialogue within the Muslim community over these issues in this country. Moreover there must be greater interrogation of claims by al-Shabaab of Islamic doctrine, human relations, usage of terms related to Islam and violence in the name of religion.

Should the Muslim in community here borrow a leaf from Somalia religious authorities?

On 11 September 2013 a group of 165 Somali religious leaders issued a fatwa condemning al-Shabaab. They had met at a National Conference on Extremism held in Somalia. The Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud opened this government-organised conference that drew Somali scholars, elders and imams from both within the country and abroad. At the end of the four-day conference a seven-point religious edict were read out by the Islamic scholar Sheikh Abdirizak Ahmed Mohamud. It declares:

• “Al-Shabab has strayed from the correct path of Islam, leading the Somali people onto the wrong path. The ideology they are spreading is a danger to the Islamic religion and the existence of the Somali society.

• “The Somali government is an Islamic administration; it is forbidden to fight against it or regard its members as infidels.

• “Al-Shabab, an extremist group, must atone to God and must cease its erroneous ideology and criminal actions.

• “It is forbidden to join, sympathise or give any kind of support to al-Shabab.
• “It is a religious duty to refuse shelter to al-Shabab members, who must be handed over to Somali institutions responsible for security.

• “It is a taboo to negotiate on behalf of al-Shabab members in custody or release them from jail.

• “Somali officials have a religious duty to protect the Somali people from the atrocities of al-Shabab. The Somali public also has an obligation to assist the government in its security operations against al-Shabab.” (These details were first reported by the BBC).

Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon, who gave the closing remarks at the conference, said the Somali federal government would take resolutions from the conference under consideration in its efforts to fight extremism, the UN-funded Radio Bar-Kulan reported.

Religious leaders, scholars, elders and intellectuals from across the country and the diaspora met to devise solutions to increase security and stability in Somalia.

Sheila Musaji editor/blogger of The American Muslim, supporting the Fatwa said: “As an American Muslim I believe that the fatwa issued by the scholars in Somalia applies everywhere. It is wrong to sympathize with or give any kind of support to al-Shabab or any other extremist groups.”

She further says, “It is a religious duty to refuse shelter to known members of such terrorist groups, and if any are known in our communities they should be reported to law enforcement.”

One cannot miss the fact that the overwhelming majority of Muslim scholars and ordinary Muslims reject extremism and terrorism and have condemned each and every act carried out by criminal terrorists.

The haunting challenge remains groups like al-Shabab, al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, the Taliban, who care little of what Muslim scholars or the majority of ordinary Muslims have to say. They continue to attempt to justify or cloak their criminal activities by claiming an Islamic justification. For this reason, they are as likely to kill Muslims as non-Muslims because their fanatical views see everyone who doesn’t share their views as the enemy.
Mohamed Abdullahi, a Nairobi-based Somali analyst told the BBC’s Newsday programme: “The fatwa issued by so many prominent scholars, is likely to sway opinions on the ground, but is unlikely to change the path of those in the group’s top leadership.”

Mohamed’s profound advice was: “The fatwa includes a security element of community policing against al-Shabab. It should be coupled with other efforts to win the hearts and minds of people on the ground.” He insisted, for obvious reasons that, “there should be parallel programme to ensure that those young men who joined al- shabaab for economic reasons, for instance, are provided with employment or opportunities as well as convincing those who are really not extremist in ideology.”

It is not enough to condemn the extremists in the press; we need to go into our communities, madarasas and mosques. More needs to be done and everyone needs to come on board to challenge this ideology if we are to remain one society.

Shahed Amanullah, another blogger, reports on (23 September) of Somali youth leaders like Mohamed Ali busy mobilizing Somalis to push back. A few weeks ago he launched a Generation Change chapter in Mogadishu (Generation Change Mogadishu) and it has inspired 50 of his peers to work on projects that rebuild the country and take it back from the extremists.

The Generation Change Kenya chapter in Nairobi is likewise doing great work in this area. Please give them your encouragement, your advice, and your support so that they can show the extremists that these youth won’t be manipulated anymore for evil ends.

Muslim communities need to ponder where this strain of extremism is coming from, who is promoting it, and why are so many being radicalized in spite of the clear teachings of Islam? They need to ask who is teaching this perversion of Islam and why are young people listening to them instead of the overwhelming majority of traditional scholars?

It is in answering these questions that we will begin to understand the changes in the last few decades and begin to explore how ordinary Muslims can counter this perversion of Islam in a meaningful way.

Canon Francis Omondi
Anglican Church Of Kenya
All Saints Cathedral Diocese

Somali Militants Tap Global Recruiting Network


Somali militia

Al-Shabaab Uses Videos, Financial Incentives and Brute Force to Draw Members

EASTLEIGH, Kenya—When Islamic militants came for Qassim Mohamed, the Somali self-defense coach couldn’t defend himself.

The men from al-Shabaab, the al Qaeda-backed group that claimed responsibility for the deadly Nairobi mall attack, beat the karate instructor as they tried to recruit him. They slammed rifle butts into his chest and threatened to kill his family. Mr. Mohamed didn’t dare raise a fist. Instead, family members paid bribes for his release and he fled the capital Mogadishu to Kenya in 2009.

“If you try to defend yourself, you will die,” said Mr. Mohamed, now 30 years old, who counsels other Somalis against extremism as part of a new youth mentor program in Eastleigh, outside Nairobi. “I escaped, started a new life, but al-Shabaab will always be behind me.”

From the strife of Somalia to the slums of Kenya to the leafy streets of Minneapolis, Minn., al-Shabaab has put together a global recruiting network to replenish its militancy. The drive draws on videos for the curious; small financial incentives for the poor; and sometimes brute force for the reluctant, said people who have had contact with members of the group.

The common trait among them, say analysts and aid workers, is a willingness to kill for their religion.

“Looking for a socio-economic profile to who al-Shabaab recruits would be less useful than looking for a psychological profile,” said Cedric Barnes, Horn of Africa director for the International Crisis Group.

A spokesman for al-Shabaab didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment about its recruiting efforts. The al-Shabaab militancy, which sprung from Somalia’s two-decade civil war and vowed allegiance to al Qaeda last year, has become a growing regional threat.

It carried out multiple blasts in July 2010 that struck Kampala, Uganda, killing more than 70 people who were watching the World Cup soccer finals. In Somalia, al-Shabaab recently hit a number of civilian targets, including the United Nations compound and the country’s Supreme Court. It also took responsibility for the shooting rampage that began Saturday at the popular Westgate mall in Nairobi that left more than 60 people dead, Kenya’s biggest terror attack since the U.S. Embassy bombing in 2008.

On Thursday, forensics experts with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Interpol and a number of other countries combed through the wrecked interior of the shopping center. Police on the scene said no additional bodies were pulled out during the day.

Kenyan officials said the al-Shabaab mall attackers represented multiple countries, and may have included Americans and a British woman. An international arrest notice was issued Thursday for Samantha Lewthwaite, a British woman who is the widow of one of four London suicide bombers who killed 56 people in 2005. The Kenyan government is investigating the 29-year-old Ms. Lewthwaite in relation to the Nairobi attack; she is also wanted on explosives-related charges tied to a 2011 terror plot.

Ms. Lewthwaite, who is believed to have come to Kenya in 2011, is among a number of Westerners who authorities say have joined the Somali militancy in recent years. A 2011 report from the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security found at least 40 Americans have joined al-Shabaab. Kyle Loven, spokesman for the FBI in Minnesota, said his office has had an active investigation since 2007 into so-called travelers who have left Minnesota—which has the largest population of Somali-Americans in the U.S.—to engage in terrorism activities in East Africa. Mr. Loven said federal authorities recently discovered videos that seek to entice Somali-Americans to join the group by glamorizing fighting in Somalia. He said he wasn’t able to confirm whether Minnesotans were involved in the Nairobi mall attack.

The best-known American member of al-Shabaab was Omar Hammami, an Alabama native who rapped and tweeted on behalf of the group. Mr. Hammami, nicknamed “the American” among fellow militants, is believed to have been killed in recent al-Shabaab infighting.

But it is the refugee camps and slums of Kenya that provide the most constant flows of al-Shabaab recruits outside Somalia. The country has about 500,000 Somali refugees in a camp on its northeastern border with Somalia. More than two million Somalis live in Kenya. Al-Shabaab has stepped up attacks in Kenya after the government in 2011 dispatched troops to Somalia to drive militants from strongholds.

Al-Shabaab also claimed responsibility for an attack Wednesday night on a police station in northeast Kenya that killed two officers. The Kenyan government said it has now beefed up security in towns along the Somalia border. The group’s leader said late Wednesday that there is no way Kenya can “withstand a war of attrition inside your own country.”

In a statement posted online, Ahmed Abdi Mohamed Godane, who goes by his nom de guerre Mukhtar Abu Zubayr, said, “Make your choice today and withdraw all your forces. Otherwise be prepared for an abundance of blood that will be spilled in your country, economic downfall and displacement.”

In Eastleigh, known as Little Mogadishu for its many Somali refugees, there is widespread fear the Nairobi attack will intensify police scrutiny. At the same time, the Nairobi slum has been a frequent target of grenade attacks blamed on al-Shabaab. The tensions have created a market for mental-health professionals and a man who walks through Eastleigh’s muddy streets selling plastic posters of kittens that read: “Peace for a Troubled Mind.”

Dr. Maimuna Mohamud, who helps run a local health clinic with her husband, said there has been a surge in Somali patients with stress-related symptoms since the mall attacks. “We fear the police. We fear al-Shabaab,” she said.

Police spokeswoman Zipporah Mboroki said they have “an open-door policy” to combat extremism in communities. “If anyone has information they can report it to the police,” she said.

Al-Shabaab is drawing recruits beyond Little Mogadishu. In Majengo, a slum for poor Kenyans, small mosques are popping up between corrugated shacks. In a place where most people don’t have work, local mosques often ease financial hardship, subsidizing weddings and offering free burials for the dead, said Robert Ochona, a local radio journalist.

Collins Andago, a 25-year-old car washer in Majengo, said his brother, Musa, became a recent convert to Islam and then suddenly disappeared in 2011. Collins Andago reported his brother to Kenya’s counterterrorism police, who tracked him to Mombasa, where he and another friend were trying to get to Somalia. The friend made it to Somalia, he said.

Musa Andago, 19, is now back home but declined to be interviewed. Collins Andago estimates more than 100 young men from Majengo have headed to Somalia over the past couple of years.

“They think you fight jihad you will go to heaven,” he says. “They go and don’t come back.”

Mr. Mohamed, the karate coach, has stayed away from Somalia, but al-Shabaab has continued to menace him. Group members have dropped by the family home in Mogadishu to ask where he is. His father would profess not to know. In April, a group of three men shot and killed his father as he walked home from the mosque, Mr. Mohamed said.

The choice for al-Shabaab is simple, he says. “To be with them. Or to die”

Write to Peter Wonacott at

Quitting ICC? : no We cannot afford this!

Both our Senate and Parliament voted to withdraw Kenya from the Rome Statutes that established the International Criminal Court. Inevitably this has brought the subject of the ICC to the public stage in Kenya. This should be very healthy for our democracy. How I wish it would force a national discourse that has been lacking – one that embraces the topics of law, impunity and justice. Furthermore, such a discussion would force both government and citizens to reassess the costs and benefits of establishing international norms and the effects of opposing or complying with them.Kenya Parliament

We seem to be skeptics and rebels against everything we believe in, yet we embrace them whenever it is expeditious. The famous poet and essayist GK Chesterton, portrayed the flagging position of our present leaders on important issues like this when he said:

“But the new rebel is a skeptic, and will not entirely trust anything. He has no loyalty; therefore he can never be really a revolutionist[… ]In short, the modern revolutionist, being an infinite skeptic, is always engaged in undermining his own mines. In his book on politics he attacks men for trampling on morality; in his book on ethics he attacks morality for trampling on men. Therefore the modern man in revolt has become practically useless for all purposes of revolt. By rebelling against everything he has lost his right to rebel against anything.” ― G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

Moving the motion in Parliament, Hon. Aden Duale. the majority leader in the House, said ; “The sovereignty of Kenya with a working judiciary and a vibrant democracy is under threat.” Then he added, ‘The constitution of Kenya promulgated in 2010 is supreme to any other law whether local or foreign.”

We should note that under the Rome Statute, domestic courts wield the primary authority, and only when they are unwilling or unable to prosecute crimes against humanity does the ICC have jurisdiction. One would hope that since the reformation of our judicial system it would have responded with alacrity to violations of humanitarian law committed during the post election violence, thereby eliminating the need for the ICC to prosecute, even though the statute ascribes ICC jurisdiction to only the most egregious and systematic crimes against civilians. We should have seen more indictments of offenders of PEV in our courts by now.

Charles Kanjama, an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya, arguing in support for the withdrawal from ICC said, “Kenya should not spend an hour longer than necessary as party to the Rome Statute. But the ICC suspects should continue co-operating in full, as long as ICC respects Kenya’s sovereignty in procedural rulings on the manner of trial. During trial, if ICC is not flexible enough to allow the Jubilee leaders concurrently to discharge their electoral mandate, a sovereign Kenya will have no other option save default. Kenyans already made their choice on March 4th. It’s now ICC’s turn to make its choice.”

Does it matter that we are signatories to the Rome statutes?

Being part of the Rome statutes stamps our belonging to the community of nations. This strengthens rather than undermines our sovereignty. Our withdrawal from the ICC may serve to isolate us more.
It is important that we become aware of a recent development in this field in the form of the UN’s “Responsibility to Protect” document. In December 2001, a UN Commission drafted a report titled ‘The Responsibility to Protect’ which developed “the idea that sovereign states have a responsibility to protect their own citizens from avoidable catastrophe – from mass murder and rape, from starvation – but that when they are unwilling or unable to do so, that responsibility must be borne by the broader community of states.”

The report therefore, promoted the notion of “sovereignty as responsibility” and invoked inter alia the principles of Just War Theory to buttress it.

I must hasten to add that the report itself does not have the status of law, nor does it recommend amending the UN Charter with a provision for humanitarian intervention.
Kiambaa Church
It is for this very reason that the events of 2007-8 brought international intervention to Kenya. This shielded us from further humanitarian catastrophe and worked to bring Justice to the victims of PEV. Globalisation and rising interdependence solidifies the need and legitimacy of an international rule of law, the enforcement of which must be multilateral and cooperative.

The Kenyan case should be seen as a form of international intervention on behalf of human rights through the ICC just like military interventions elsewhere. For a claim on sovereignty we need an equal measure o especially a commitment to upholding human rights.

The end of the Cold War inaugurated changes in the international system that was marked by an increased prevalence of humanitarian interventions in reordering of global governance. The NATO campaign in Kosovo in 1999 is often described as the paradigmatic example of these humanitarian interventions: it is revered as history’s first instance of a truly altruistic war.

Nevertheless, the rationale offered for the war making, and the means employed therein, have been subjected to a plethora of criticisms, which are at the forefront of recent debates on global governance.

James Rosenau, an American political scientist and international affairs scholar, defined global governance as “intentional activities designed to regularise the arrangement which sustains world affairs.” Egregious humanitarian abuses do not sustain world affairs and it is within this context that humanitarian interventions are perceived as a form of global governance because they attempt to rectify such aberrations in the international order.

These interventions, along with the recent focus on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Genocide Convention, have prompted some legal scholars to argue that humanitarian interventions are so commonplace in world politics that they are in fact a type of customary international law.

The doctrine and practice of humanitarian intervention presents a seemingly insurmountable dilemma in global governance: this dilemma is characterized by the tension between the primacy of state sovereignty and the protection of fundamental human rights. Some have cited the illegality of humanitarian interventions according to international law. Many states have on several occasions applied the concept as a form of global governance by intervening in the affairs of other sovereign states.
Hon. William Ruto
Hon. Kindiki Kithure, the majority leader in the senate, during the motion to withdraw Kenya from the ICC tore into the court saying, “The ICC has been turned into a vehicle to pursue international politics in a very rudimentary and capricious manner.” He further said that the ICC has been undermined by “a rogue prosecutor who is not supervised by anyone and is accountable to no one”. He may be borrowing a leaf from reasons unfortunately advanced by countries who have refused to ratify the statutes.

The US refusal to officially ratify the ICC is a huge drawback to the international community’s war on human rights violation. The US seems to be in bed with Russia and China when it comes to international law: by joining them in not ratifying the treaty, it is telling the world that it shares the priorities of these governments.

The US has been vehement that their citizens will be tried under the US laws for any human right abuses. Although US ratification would do little to motivate Russia and China to make the same move, it would send a clear message to the world that the US is ready to accept accountability for its actions and separate its record of human rights from those of Russia and China. The move would further ostracise Russia and China, both of whom face intense criticism today for their reluctance to reprimand the Syrian government.

Kenya’s quitting the ICC would not dampen the spirit of international Community’s protection of human rights. The victims of injustice would continue to cry for elusive justice. We will certainly reap political pressure of isolation that can prove such a strong diplomatic tool: it is crucial to publicly and globally separate the nations that are committed to prosecuting crimes against humanity and those that are not.

What will be our justification for failure to accede to the only established system of international due process and to recognise the international rule of law?

Rev Canon Francis Omondi
Anglican Church of Kenya
All Saints Cathedral Diocese

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