I Was Promised Ksh10M, Land in Ruto-Sang Case - ICC Witness

  • Senior Trial Lawyer Anton Steynberg during the witness tampering case against lawyer Paul Gicheru at the ICC on February 15, 2022.
    Senior Trial Lawyer Anton Steynberg during the witness tampering case against lawyer Paul Gicheru at the ICC on February 15, 2022.
    Courtesy
  • A witness appearing before the International Criminal Court (ICC) at the Hague on Tuesday, March 22, told the court that he was promised Ksh10 million and six acres of land to withdraw his testimony against Deputy President William Ruto and radio journalist, Joshua Arap Sang.

    The witness, who was appearing before Trial Chamber III that is hearing a case against lawyer Paul Gicheru - who is accused of interfering with witnesses, told the court that one of the pieces of land he was to receive was to be fully developed for him.

    He went ahead to state that he received Ksh2 million only, which was paid in instalments. However, the court heard that one of the people involved in the transactions had indicated that the witness had been paid Ksh4 million.

    ICC headquarters at the Hague, Netherlands
    ICC headquarters at the Hague, Netherlands

    The witness noted that he neither received the six acres of land as promised nor did he get the developed piece of land despite recanting his evidence against the accused.

    “We had a disagreement because the person claimed they paid me Ksh4 million but I was only paid Ksh2 million in four instalments," the witness told the Hague-based court.

    He admitted that he wrote a letter to the ICC's Prosecutor stating that he was exiting from a list of witnesses against DP Ruto and journalist Joshua arap Sang.

    The witness further told the court that he was coached on what to tell the ICC Prosecutor's office and whom he would hand the letter to.

    "I was even coached on what to say in the letter of resignation as a prosecution witness and instructed on the person to hand it to after signing it. I did my part and handed the letter to the persons I was told,” he added.

    The witness narrated that he was under the ICC protection program and briefly left it to attend to matters at home when he was approached by other witnesses who advised him to withdraw from the case.

    He recalled a visit by a person who was well known to him, and who was also on the list of witnesses against Ruto but had withdrawn and recanted his testimony.

    Lawyer Paul Gicheru during the opening of his case on Tuesday February 15, 2022
    Lawyer Paul Gicheru during the opening of his case on Tuesday, February 15, 2022
    ICC

    “I had read in the newspaper that he withdrew and when he came to see me, he asked me if I could join him in another place where we could look for money. He told me I would get a good reward,” the witness told the court.

    “They gave me a lawyer who they said would help me draft the resignation letter. I cannot exactly remember what I said in the letter since it was them who coached me on what to say."