Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony Vows to Sue President Uhuru's Government at ICC
Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony has vowed to sue President Uhuru Kenyatta's government at the Hague-based International Criminal Court (ICC).
This is after the government carried out forceful evictions against those who have encroached the Mau Forest, a critical water tower in the country.
The governor has, however, termed the evictions as mass displacement of people, that constitutes a crime against humanity which is triable by the ICC.
[caption caption="Police officers standing next to fallen logs inside Mau Forest"][/caption]
It is in this consideration that Governor Chepkwony has opted to refer the matter to ICC seeking redress for his county residents.
Reports indicate that the Kericho County boss, through his lawyers, wrote to the ICC prosecutor on 3rd August claiming that: "On various occasions in the month of June, July and August 2018, the Government of Kenya undertook to evict, destroy property and forcefully expel nearly 40,000 families believed to be of one ethnic community; the Kipsigis.
Demanding an action to be taken against President Uhuru's government, Chepkwony's legal team notes that houses were torched by the authorities hence creating a humanitarian crisis.
The Kericho Governor also notes that there has not been any intervention from the Kenyan government on the matters.
In July, Governor Chepkwony filed a suit at the Environment and Lands Court in Narok seeking to stop the evictions.
Through lawyer Peter Wanyama, Chepkwony alleged that the government is illegally and under inhumane circumstances was evicting private owners of individual property comprising Reiyo, Enakishomi, Sisiyan, Enoosokon and Nkaroni group ranches.
"The security officers burn houses, livestock and beat up the property owners in a brazen display of impunity and high-handedness. It is scorched earth eviction," the petitioner stated.
[caption caption="A house up in flames after it was set a blaze by officers inside Masai Mau Forest"][/caption]
In the suit filed at the Environment and Lands Court in Narok, Governor Chepkwony listed Cabinet Secretaries Farida Karoney (Lands), Fred Matiang'i (Interior), Narok County Commissioner George Natembeya and the National Land Commission as respondents.
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