International Justice

CJ354 Endicott College

The ICC Witness Project and Kenya

Kenya violenceTake a look at the ICC Witness Project that

“is a collaboration between Kenyan poets, in Kenya itself and in the diaspora. The project aims to give voice to some of the missing witnesses for the ICC trial. We want to make sure those who were part of the Post-Election Violence that rocked Kenya in 2008 are not forgotten.”

Read through some of the posts on your own. This article explains the project further, in terms of why it is necessary, and how Kenyans are dealing with the legacy of violence and ICC trials. It also has a few selected and powerful posts.

Kenya needs a great many things.

It needs Post-Election Violence to unhappen:

Those who were killed need to undie, need to
crawl from their graves in solidarity.
Ashes need to burn backwards, float in air,
gently unfuse themselves from wooden church doors
and melted glass windows.

women need to guard their wombs, begin the process
of being unraped, erase their memories
as they become whole, unbirth those children who
were begotten from violence.

And those displaced people! They need to move,
redisplace themselves back to their original locations.
Retill their lands, watch the stones
jump magically back into houses.
The pangas need to flake off the blood,
replace themselves quietly,
claim back the rust that spotted them before.

Kenya is moving on.
Kenya is moving on.

Witness #47

I do hereby make oath and swear as follows:

1. THAT I am a male adult individual of sound mind hence competent to swear this affidavit.
2. THAT I once said something about someone, but I’ve changed my sound mind.
3. THAT I now revoke my testimony because I’m terrified of what might happen instead.
4. THAT I never expected those I moved against to come into power.
5. THAT both bribery and threats are effective tools to buy a witness.
6. THAT if you are reading this, I might be in a shallow grave somewhere.

–Witness #82 

It’s an important outlet for all those victimized by the post-election violence in Kenya, and not just the selected few who can participate in an ICC trial. The Kenya cases have been marred by accusations of witness tampering, bribery, and intimidation. Truth-telling must therefore be a central feature of any accountability in Kenya. 


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