The fourth periodic report on the status of the victims in the Kenyatta case was submitted. In it, the CLR gave a brief summary of the situation of the victims in the run-up to the upcoming trial. The desperate situation and dire poverty of the victims stands out. They also carry great hope- perhaps excessive hope- in the ability of the Trust Fund for Victims to assist them in bettering their lives. But a number of victims also worried that the general security situation Kenya as the ICC trials get started. A lack of of clarity about the status of the case was causing others to lose interest in the ICC altogether.
The Kenyatta Case Trial Chamber (Chamber V(B)) asked the participants to give fresh views on the question of where the court should sit. This was partly due to the fact that it was Francis Muthaura who filed the initial application seeking the change of venue. Now that he is no longer a part of the case, his application, according to the court, is no longer valid and the process had to be re-started. The second reason for seeking fresh views was that the Presidential Elections were held while Muthaura’s application was pending. This, and the fact that the accused now hold the highest offices in Kenya’s executive branch, were matters the court felt were directly relevant to the question of the venue of the trial.
In another matter related to Francis Muthaura, the court asked his former legal team for their views on whether the CLR should have access to certain confidential or redacted filings whose access is controlled by the Defence. The Muthaura Defence team (some of whom now represent William Ruto) replied, opposing the CLR’s access to some filings- such as National Security Advisory Committee minutes and certain other material provided to Muthaura’s defence team by the Kenyan Government. Muthaura’s lawyers however accepted that the CLR could receive a few documents if access to them were deemed relevant to the personal interest of the victims he represents. The Defence also wants redactions on some the documents maintained.