I am ready to testify for Ruto at ICC, Oburu says as ODM gives reasons Uhuru ‘fixed’ DP

Nominated MP Oburu Oginga has said he is willing to be an ICC witness for the DP’s defense team as “I personally believe [William] Ruto is innocent”.

Oginga, who is Cord leader Raila Odinga’s brother, said; “We were with him [the DP] on a daily basis until the deal by former President Mwai Kibaki was signed.”

He said Ruto was with the ODM team in Nairobi during the chaos and could only have been framed by their opponents in PNU.

“When he was charged we thought there was tangible evidence. We are ready to testify for him because we need to move away from the ‘fixing’ claims,” he said.

Oginga said the party believes honesty is the best approach to governing a nation, adding that they “detest politics of lies, misinformation and mere survival”.

Speaking during a press conference at Capitol Hill, Nairobi county, on Friday, he said party leaders “believe this nation needs to be set free and only the truth shall set us free”.

He was accompanied by seven ODM leaders, who highlighted 10 reasons why they believe President Uhuru Kenyatta ‘fixed’ Ruto at the ICC, as leader Raila Odinga claimed.

Reading a statement on behalf of the MPs, deputy treasurer Olga Karani said claims by Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria that PNU funded the procuring of witnesses were untrue.

“Immediately after the elections, the bank accounts of the party were looted by its officials and cronies of former President Mwai Kibaki. PNU was left broke,” Karani claimed.

She said the party neither paid suppliers for campaign materials, nor employees, saying it had no money to buy off witnesses, and that “the money came from the UK Centre”.

Karani said JAP vice chairman David Murathe was the head of the centre, which they said “employed Kuria and funded the procuring and coaching of witnesses”.

“Murathe is one of Uhuru’s closest confidants. Uhuru cannot therefore claim to be ignorant of what Murathe and Kuria were doing,” she said.

Another reason Karani gave was that the then NIS director Michael Gichangi submitted “critical evidence” against Ruto, and gave a dossier that implicated him on July 21, 2008.

She said the ICC relied on the evidence to confirm crimes against humanity charges against Ruto, and that Gichangi’s name was submitted to the court as one of the witnesses for Uhuru’s team.

“In November 2013, long after Ruto and URP had assisted Uhuru to become president, Ruto asked Uhuru to let him have evidence held by NIS. The evidence was to assist Ruto in his defense. Uhuru refused,” she said.

The deputy treasurer said the information was in Gichangi’s custody, but that Ruto was not allowed to have it despite being “entitled” to it as DP.

Karani further said the ICC named Ambassador Francis Muthaura, the then Head of the Civil Service, as a suspect, but the government “shopped” for a lawyer to represent him.

“The lawyer sourced and retained by the government was Karim Khan. Oncee the charges against Ruto were confirmed, the PNU/Uhuru faction convinced Ruto that Khan was the lawyer that would help him,” she said.

“And that he should reject ODM’s offer of George Oraro who had managed to free Henry Kosgey. Until this day, Karim is paid by Uhuru and his government and Ruto’s case keeps going from bad to worse”.

On Wednesday, ODM called for the prosecution of the President’s senior political advisor claiming she procured false witnesses against the DP and his co-accused journalist Joshua Sang.

National chairman John Mbadi said the advisor, Nancy Gitau, “worked with Kuria to procure the witnesses”, and that Defense PS Mutea Iringo also helped frame Ruto.