PNU rejects amnesty call
Published on May 12, 2008, 12:00 am
By Beauttah Omanga
Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka and Justice, Minister Ms Martha Karua led a team allied to PNU in rejecting ODM demands that people arrested over post-election violence be released.
The VP said it was wrong for any member of the Government to contradict a Government position in disregard of Cabinet collective responsibility.
Said Kalonzo: “Anybody who had a hand in the post- election violence must face the law. Those who took part or hid behind their tribes while 1,500 Kenyans were killed and 350,000 evicted from their homes must face the law, no matter how long it takes.”
|Public Health minister, Mrs Beth Mugo, VP Kalonzo Musyoka (centre) and Deputy Prime Minister, Mr Uhuru Kenyatta, in Kawangware, Nairobi, on Sunday. Picture by Collins Kweyu|
Coming out of the bonding session that was held at the weekend that resolved that ministers would not contradict one another in public, the VP was categorical: “You can run, but you cannot hide forever.”
Without naming names, the VP said Kenyans uprooted from their homes must be helped to go back. He told off some Government officials who were against the move.
“It is a Government policy that IDPs be resettled where they were evicted. It beats logic when some leaders demand that alternative homes be identified,” said the VP.
The anti-amnesty stand was an apparent reaction to Agriculture minister Mr William Ruto’s remarks in Kisumu on Saturday, during the homecoming party for Prime Minister, Mr Raila Odinga.
Ruto was reported to have called for the release of suspects arrested during the polls chaos. He argued that they were fighting for democracy following the disputed presidential election results.
Karua, who spoke before the VP, said leaders who were calling for the release of suspects were insincere.
“Regardless of what political side we stand on, we must all respect the law. Those facing charges in court must account for their acts in full as per the law,” she said.
She added: “We cannot interfere with the legal system for political expediency.”
The leaders, including Deputy Prime Minister, Mr Uhuru Kenyatta, and Cabinet minister, Mrs Esther Murugi, said there was need for leaders to speak in one voice and support national healing spearheaded by President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga.
The leaders were speaking in Dagoreti on Sunday, during a thanksgiving ceremony for Cabinet minister and local MP, Mrs Beth Mugo.