President Uhuru Kenyatta has criticized the Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti over a recent move to reopen 2007-2008 Post Election Violence (PEV) cases.
In his address on Wednesday at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC), the Head of State noted that the process amounted to “reopening of old wounds”.
The President said he won’t allow that to happen.
“Wale ambao wanajaribu kuchimbua makaburi, nilisoma kwa gazeti juzi. Wasifikiri wanacheza, mimi siwezi kukubaliana na mambo kama hayo. Tumetoka huko na mambo haya tumezika katika kaburi ya sahau,” he said.
“You must always think before you do something. Sisi hatutaki vita katika taifa letu la Kenya. Sisi wengine wetu tunajua maana ya amani na sisi tunataka kurekebisha zile shida kwa njia ya kikatiba na kisheria ndio Kenya isonge mbele na wakenya wawe kitu kimoja.”
President Uhuru Kenyatta To Mr Kinoti – "Haufikirii" 😅 .
The king of drama reminds me all the drama he created with the cctv footage at Harambee annex 🤣 # pic.twitter.com/VNg1Y9Fd5R
— Silvia Wangeci ➐ (@Silvia_Wangeci) November 25, 2020
The President was speaking during the launch of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Referendum Bill and collection of signatures exercise.
Kinoti had on Monday vowed to ensure perpetrators of the violence that left at least 1,200 people dead and hundreds of thousands displaced would be brought to book.
The declaration came years after the government officially announced that there was no evidence to prosecute perpetrators.
Kinoti was speaking after hosting victims and witnesses of the violence who recorded statements at the DCI Headquarters in Nairobi.
According to Kinoti, a total of 118 cases were registered by complainants and witnesses.
From the cases, Kinoti said, 72 are from those whose wives/husbands/children were killed and the rest are from those who were displaced from their homes.
Kinoti said from the witness statements, Kenyans will see arrests as many perpetrators are still at large.
The DCI boss’ remarks elicited an angry reaction from a section of Kenyan leaders who criticized him saying the move could destabilize the country as the affected communities had moved on.
Following the developments, he was forced to issue a statement indicating that his office will not reopen closed cases but focus on newly reported complaints.
Kinoti had been accused of being used by “cartels” to stop Deputy President William Ruto’s 2022 presidential ambitions by reviving the cases.
Ruto and President Kenyatta were among Kenyans, who were charged with instigating the 2007-2008 violence at the International Criminal Court in the Hague, Netherlands.
The crimes against humanity charges against the president and his deputy were dropped in 2014 and 2016 respectively over lack of sufficient evidence.