Witness Testifies Sang Said Votes Were Being Stolen in 2007

A witness told the International Criminal Court (ICC) former radio journalist Joshua arap Sang said that votes were being stolen as Kenya waited for the electoral commission to announce the full presidential results of the December 2007 elections.

Witness 442 said on Tuesday that Sang made the claim on Kass FM, a Kalenjin language radio station he worked for at the time. The witness said Sang even gave as an example the results in one constituency, Juja, to back his claim. She did not give more details about Sang’s claim nor was she asked more questions on the issue.

The witness’s testimony came at the end of the day, and it is possible trial lawyer Lara Renton will pursue this in her examination-in-chief Wednesday.

Sang is facing trial at the ICC on three counts of crimes against humanity. His co-defendant is Deputy President William Samoei Ruto, who is also facing three counts of crimes against humanity.

Earlier in the day, Witness 442 had testified that she briefly attended a political meeting at Kipchoge Stadium in Kapsabet where she heard former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and former cabinet minister Henry Kosgey speak. She said that the people who attended the meeting were members of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party. She said the meeting took place sometime between September and October 2007.

Witness 442 said Kosgey told the meeting that they should remain united and bring an end to the rule of one ethnic group. She also said Kosgey told the gathering that if the Kikuyu were allowed to continue running the country then they [the Kikuyu] would urinate on them.

The witness said that when Odinga addressed the meeting, he also urged them to remain united and remove the people in power at the time. She said Odinga warned that if they attempted to steal the votes there would be a tsunami. The witness said it was after that meeting she started hearing many Kalenjins, Luos, and Luhyas use the term tsunami.

Witness 442 also testified about an evening meeting of Kalenjin councilors she briefly attended during the campaign period. She said she was on her way from work when she saw a group of Kalenjin councilors talking and she heard them refer to Kikuyus as their enemies.

At the start of her testimony on Tuesday, the witness spoke about the campaigns ahead of the 2005 referendum, particularly what she heard on Kass FM when Sang was leading discussions.

Before Witness 442 began testifying the court heard submissions on whether she should be given protective measures. The prosecution had applied to Trial Chamber V(a) to grant such measures. Both Sang’s and Ruto’s defense opposed the application. The trial chamber ruled to grant the measures, which include distorting her voice and her image on the court’s live stream.

After the court made its ruling, David Hooper, one of Ruto’s lawyers, made an application for a less redacted statement of Witnesses 442 and 469. He also wanted more detail about whether the Office of the Prosecutor or the Victims and Witnesses Unit handled payments for Witness 442 while she has been under a protection program. The rest of the discussion of Hooper’s applications took place in private session. The judges also made their ruling in private session.

Trial Chamber V(a) did not hold a hearing on Monday. The court did not provide an explanation why.

Witness 442 will continue to testify on Wednesday.

 

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