The denouement of the saga is still uncertain. Two Kenyan political supremos, Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto, are appearing at the ICC in the Hague to answer to charges of crimes against humanity. The two are among six Kenyans accused by Moreno Ocampo for being the brains behind the violence in 2007-08 in Kenya that killed over 1300 and displaced close to half a million people.
The ICC trial of the six is likely to bring to light the hypocrisy of Kenya’s ruling class. For far too long the political elite have used violence as a political tool. Former president Moi perfected the craft and got away with it in 1992 and 1997 (more people died then than in 2007-08). If all goes well, it appears that this time around things will be different.
My hope is that the six accused will bring all to light so that Kenyans can know their leaders for who they really are.
There is no doubt that ethnicity will continue to cloud Kenyan politics. But it is also true that Kenyans will, from now on, know what is at stake when their leaders incite them to violence. They will know that this crop of people do not give a rat’s behind about their (the people’s) plight. They will fully understand why the government of Kenya can spend millions of dollars in defense of a few men while hundreds of thousands of ordinary citizens (and victims of crimes committed by the very few men) continue to subsist in limbo. They will understand why millions get spent every year to build offices, buy expensive cars and pay for the lavish lives of the ruling elite while ordinary Kenyans starve.
They will know that their tribal leaders do not have their interests at heart.
Whatever the outcome of the ICC trial, the mystic around Kenya’s ethnic leaders is gone. These little venal and inept men and women who like parading around as gods will no longer have the final word on everything.