ICC: Kenyan Legislators Rush To Apply For Dutch Visas

More than 25 MPs jammed the Netherlands Embassy in Nairobi Thursday to apply for visas to travel to The Hague next week in what analysts said could be a sign of growing confidence by allies that the cases against President Uhuru Kenyatta would collapse.

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria. PHOTO | FILE

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria: He led legislators to the Netherlands embassy to seek visas to travel to the International Criminal Court (ICC) where the President is expected to attend a status conference which is likely to determine the direction of his case. PHOTO | FILE

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria and his Kieni counterpart, Kanini Kega, led the MPs to the embassy to seek visas to travel to the International Criminal Court (ICC) where the President is expected to attend a status conference which is likely to determine the direction of his case.

Mr Kenyatta has been ordered to appear before the ICC judges on October 8.

Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Kithure Kindiki informed all MPs and Senators wishing to accompany the President to The Hague to apply for travel documents.

“An arrangement has been made for all Members of Parliament to go to Netherlands embassy in Nairobi tomorrow (Friday), October 3 between 8.30 am and 10 am. This is voluntary and each member travelling will cater for their own expenses.”

Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi however said none of the MPs had filed notification of absence from the House as required by the standing orders.

Speaking at his office where he announced plans for Parliament to conduct outreach programmes next month, Mr Muturi said : “I have not received request from Members who require travelling to various destinations even if they want to engage in foreign tourism.” He added that the House did not have a common position on the matter.

“I will be attending a conference on Commonwealth Parliamentary Association in Yaoundé Cameroon on that day. I certainly will not be in that direction (ICC),” he said.

On the ICC order, Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandai said: “Uhuru has no choice. He finds himself in catch 22 situation whether he goes to ICC or defies. If he defies, a warrant of arrest will be issued and he will be a pariah President or a fugitive in community of nations.

“If he goes, it will be precedent setting. He will be the first Head of State to appear before ICC. Kenya’s reputation will suffer internationally given the charges of crimes against humanity,” he said.

But his Homabay Town counterpart Peter Kaluma asked Mr Kenyatta not to honour the summonses saying no Constitution of any sovereign State allows a sitting Head of State to be tried in a court of law.

– Business Daily