‘ICC ex-prosecutor was autocratic over Kenya cases’

The former prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC), Luis Moreno Ocampo, is the target of damning criticism in an internal report into the handling of the cases relating to the violence that followed Kenya’s disputed 2007 election.

About 1,200 people were killed and hundreds of thousands forced from their homes.

Mr Ocampo was closely involved in the criminal cases that followed and those indicted became known as the “Ocampo Six”.

The six – including the current President, Uhuru Kenyatta, and his deputy, William Ruto – were indicted by the ICC for alleged involvement. But none of them went to full trial as the charges were either dropped or the cases were dismissed.

At the time, the prosecutor who succeeded Mr Ocampo, Fatou Bensouda, blamed witness tampering and a lack of co-operation from the Kenyan authorities. But this report, which was commissioned by the prosecutor’s office, mostly looks at internal problems.

Discussing Mr Ocampo, it says that his leadership “was a major contributing factor to the problems encountered in the Kenya cases… [it] could best be categorised as autocratic, not open to contrary assessments or viewpoints, too often marginalising those who disagreed with him or reacting angrily and threateningly”.

It adds that this style “discouraged candid, contrary assessments and viewpoints to the detriment of the cases, and some lower level leaders perpetuated this attitude”.

In his response, Mr Ocampo disputes the label “autocratic” saying that the report writers were autocratic as “they did not interview me or allow me to provide explanations to their concerns.

“The real problem was the powerful nature of the accused,” he added. -BBC

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