A witness told the International Criminal Court (ICC) she did not hear Joshua arap Sang call on listeners of his radio station to stop the violence that followed the announcement of the results of the December 2007 presidential election.
On Thursday, Witness 442 gave this answer in response to a question from Judge Robert Fremr. She had earlier told the court that Sang told listeners of Kass FM that the work had been done properly, but in some places, like Nyagacho and Molo, it was not finished. Nyagacho is in Kericho, a district to the south of Eldoret town. Molo is near Nakuru town.
She said Sang had said there were still weeds in the farms that needed to be cleared. The witness told the court she understood the reference to weeds to mean the Kikuyu.
Witness 442 also told the court a group of people came to Kapsabet police station and demanded that the police release the people who had sought refuge there so that they “can finish them.” The witness said this happened on January 3, 2008, sometime after she sought refuge at the police station. She said the crowd was made up of Kalenjins who had attended a rally earlier in the day. The witness said they were angry.
For most of the day, Witness 442 testified in private session.
Trial lawyer Lara Renton ended her examination-in-chief of Witness 442 in the morning. Next to question the witness was David Hooper, who represents Deputy President William Samoei Ruto in the case.
Among the things he questioned the witness about in open court was the interpretation of what then presidential candidate Raila Odinga meant when he referred to “a tsunami” at a political meeting in Kapsabet. Witness 442 had referred to Odinga’s speech in her testimony on Tuesday.
Hooper read to her newspaper reports from December 2007 in which Odinga is quoted referring to tsunami in the context of a landslide win for his Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party. Ruto was a key leader of the party at the time. Witness 442 said her understanding was different.
Hooper also asked her about the statement she gave to the prosecution in which she said she watched Ruto on TV slap the chairman of the electoral commission at the time because he had not announced the presidential results. Hooper asked her whether she really saw that happen. Witness 442 said that is what she saw.
Ruto is on trial for his alleged role in the violence that followed the December 2007 elections. He is facing three counts of crimes against humanity. Sang is his co-accused and is also facing three counts of crimes against humanity.
Witness 442 will continue testifying on Friday.