After a lengthy fight to clear his name, the Deputy President can now breathe a sigh of relief after the International Criminal Court threw out the case against him and journalist Joshua Arap Sang.
The case, which saw the Deputy President William Ruto indicted for crimes against humanity was dismissed in a split ruling, where one judge declared it a mistrial because of what he termed as “troubling incidence of witness interference and intolerable political meddling.”
Immediately after the ruling was announced, Ruto’s supporters filled the streets of his hometown of Eldoret in a show of solidarity and support for what they see as a vindication for him.
ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda acknowledged that the loss of witnesses weakened the case against the deputy president, but she argued there still remained enough evidence to proceed with the trial.
The Deputy Presidents lawyers had previously won a ruling that prohibited use of recanted evidence in the court, before finally applying to have the case dismissed on grounds of lack of evidence.
Uhuru, who also faced similar charges but was acquitted on similar grounds took the opportunity to congratulate the Deputy President on his victory and reaffirm his confidence in him and his innocence with regard to the charges which had been levied against him.
The Chief Prosecutors office maintains though, that this is not an acquittal and as such, fresh charges may still be filled in case new evidence is unearthed.
The dismissal of this case officially puts to rest any efforts to seek justice for the victims of the 2007 post-election violence, and though both the President and his Deputy are free of all charges, the public’s expectations are still high that they will now lead the efforts to seek the people culpable and bring them to book.