Ruto ICC case fails to resume over witness hitch

NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 23 – The resumption of the ICC case facing Deputy President William Ruto and journalist Joshua arap Sang has faced yet another hitch after the final witness failed to give evidence.

Reports from The Hague says the prosecution could not locate the witness, forcing judges to adjourn.

The trial was to resume Monday following an adjournment last month when the witness set new conditions for his appearance.

The witness was to testify via video-link from a secret location after he was summoned by the Trial Chamber judges.

It’s now understood that a meeting was due to be held on Tuesday between parties in the case to determine the way forward following the latest development.

Ruto and Sang are accused of planning the 2008 post election violence that rocked the country.

The Trial Chamber V (a) summoned the witness on February 23 and asked him to be ready to begin his testimony on March 23.

The ICC Public Affairs Unit explained that Witness P0727 had been unwilling to testify which prompted the judges to summon him to appear.

According to the communication the witness made fresh conditions before testifying.

“Having been relocated for the purpose of testifying for the Office of the Prosecutor, this witness has, at various times, either refused to testify at all or placed conditions on his testimony. Witness 727 is summoned to testify on March 23, 2015,” the Public Affairs Unit stated.

The witness is the last to be presented by the Prosecution before it closes its case against Ruto and Sang.

Earlier, the prosecution had been asked by the ICC judges to close its case by March 12 but the decision changed after the 30th witness refused to testify as scheduled earlier.

Upon conclusion of the testimony of the witness, the prosecution will make its closing remarks.

The defence teams are thereafter expected to orally request for a motion of a no-case-to-answer before making written application within 14 days after closure of the prosecution’s case.

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