Another ICC witness admits cash enticement, coaching
NAIROBI, Kenya Sep 23 – The 24th witness in the ICC case against Deputy President William Ruto and journalist Joshua arap Sang on Tuesday claimed that he was coached to fabricate evidence on the promise that he would be relocated to a foreign country.
The witness revealed he attended a three-hour meeting in which two people identified as persons number 1 and 3 advised him on specific events and information to include in his statement to make it look credible.
“I had to add events that never took place so that my statement would look credible. During the meeting person number 3 promised me I would be relocated to a foreign country. Person number 3 told me that I should add those events so that my statement would look credible and person number 1 too contributed,” the witness told judges at the International Criminal Court.
The witness who is the third to take stand under summons to appear alleged that the information he gave on preparatory meetings which he had stated that he attended in his initial statement were all made up so that he could get the goodies promised to him.
He told the court that he did not attend any preparatory meetings but was advised to say that he had attended preparatory meetings before the 2008 Post Election Violence to make his statement strong.
On further questioning by Prosecution’s Senior Trial Attorney Anton Steynberg, the witness told the court that he lied that he attended the meetings so that he could give a credible statement that would warrant him financial gains and relocation to a foreign country as promised.
“We were supposed to give all those details to show what I was telling them was truthful and in that manner we would get the money and relocation to a foreign country. That is why I said everything I said,” the witness responded when he was asked why he added events to his statement.
The witness however failed to recall some of the information required about the three-hour meeting in which he was allegedly coached to fake his statement and asked the prosecution to allow him to read his statement to refresh his mind.
According to presiding judge Chile Eboe-Osuji, the current trial session is expected to run through to October 2 if witness P028 will not be ready to take stand.
The next sessions of trial will be expected to resume on November 17 and end on December 12.
The witness is expected to continue with his evidence-in-chief on Wednesday.
At the start of the current session, the prosecution informed the court that three witnesses had accepted to take stand after they were issued with summonses to appear.
Previously, the prosecution had requested for nine witnesses to be forced to appear after they recanted their evidence while others alleged they had lied in their primary statements.
The previous two of the witnesses who appeared in court alleged they were asked to lie to the court in exchange of financial benefits.
The 23rd witness alleged that he was given an already prepared statement by the prosecution and was just asked to append his signature to it.
The defence teams of Ruto and Sang have just like the prosecution dismissed the allegations saying it is not possible that the prosecution composed a statement for him.