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Senate Majority Leader Kithure Kindiki now says that Jubilee leaders will push President Kenyatta to cancel the arrangement in which British military trains in Kenya to protest UK’s stand on the ICC deferral bid.
Under the 50-year military co-operation, Kenya allows Britain to train its troops in Laikipia.
“Imagine having over 10,000 armed security officers stationed in your country, this can be a security threat and if the two countries are reading from different scripts, we are justified to kick them out,” he told the Sunday Nation.
The government could decide to use the annual permit for British troops to train in Kenya as a bargaining chip to get London to support its quest for immunity from prosecution of President Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto. The two are facing charges of crimes against humanity at the Hague-based ICC.
After the United Nations Security Council turned down the deferral request last week, the government has now adopted a bullish approach to force their way.
The campaign spearheaded by President Kenyatta’s political lieutenants is meant to force three security council members — US, UK and France — to reconsider their stand.
Jubilee coalition members are also pressing for the withdrawal of KDF soldiers from Somalia.
“A country like France should have voted in favour of our request because one of the reasons our troops went into Somalia was after a French national was kidnapped in Mombasa but their stand calls for us to change tact,” he said.
Nominated MP Johnson Sakaja said they have read “ill-motive and bad faith” from Britain’s stand.
“The past few days have given us an opportunity to re-evaluate our foreign policy, which should based on mutual interest,” he said.
Senator Zipporah Kittony supports the review of foreign policy. “We are pressing this button because we are convinced that there is a hidden agenda in this whole ICC thing. I attended the UN Security Council in New York and could sense there is a hidden agenda, I almost stormed out in protest,” she said.
House Majority Leader Aden Duale says the US has no moral authority to judge Kenyan leaders, because America has committed some of worst human rights violations in military interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
But Deputy Minority Leader Jakoyo Midiwo, a fiery critic of the government advises President Kenyatta to turn a deaf ear to this advice from his lieutenants.
“It is going to be mistake of monumental proportion is he heeds to their calls. Such will fail and will be totally counterproductive. How can a government that can hardly feed its people imagine of intimidating the West?” he posed
He said pulling KDF soldiers from Somalia will only serve to jeopardise Kenya’s national security not the US’s or Britain’s.
He also warned of a massive economic disaster if Kenya wages war on the West. “When you say that you want to look East, you must first consider minor but important facts like: Britain is a key importer of our tea. Where will we sell the tea? These people are being myopic. Politically, it may be the right move but economically it’s suicidal,” he said.
But Mr Kindiki plays down the thought that any tussle with the West might create an economic tinderbox for Kenya’s economy.
“I know somebody make us believe that there will be dire consequences, the correct position is our balance of trade with some of these countries is hugely skewed in their favour,” he says.
– Daily Nation