The Curtains have finally fallen on long serving leader of Sudan Omar Al-Bashir. This comes after a spirited fight by the people of Sudan.
Much of the credit for al-Bashir’s removal goes to the women who played a prominent role in the uprising.
Earlier this week, an iconic photo of a woman named Alaa Salah, a 22-year-old engineering and architecture student, addressing protesters from atop a car went viral.
The woman has been described by many as the face of the uprising.
Well, the people of Sudan can rest, atleast for now, knowing that their dictatorial tyrant is now powerless and might in fact be flying to the Hague anytime soon to respond to grave charges of crime against humanity.
But wait, are Sudan’s neighbours to balme for the woes the innocent people of Sudan were subjected to? Many people have argued that Omar Al-Bashir would have already been a gone and forgotten case if only Sudan’s neighbours like Kenya stood by the citizens of the Nation during their time of need.
We all remember when the International Criminal Court issued a warrant of arrest against Omar Al Bashir only for Kenya to frustrate the International Court.
On 4th March 2009, Pre-Trial Chamber I of the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a warrant for the arrest of Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir, President of Sudan, for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
He was accused of being criminally responsible, as an indirect (co-)perpetrator, for intentionally directing attacks against an important part of the civilian population of Darfur, Sudan, murdering, exterminating, raping, torturing and forcibly transferring large numbers of civilians, and pillaging their property.
This was the first warrant of arrest ever issued for a sitting Head of State by the ICC.
ICC would then ask Kenya to arrest Omar Al Bashir if he attended a regional meeting slated for the end of October, 2010 in Nairobi.
This came after Bashir had earlier attended the Promulgation of Kenya’s new constitution in August the same year but Kenya failed to arrest him as directed by the ICC.
ICC termed Kenya’s failure to arrest Bashir as “deeply troubling,”
“If states do not provide the cooperation necessary for the court’s functioning in accordance with their legal obligations, the ICC will not be able to fulfill its mandate and impunity will continue to flourish,” President Sang-Hyun Song, the then president of the International Criminal Court told the United Nations General Assembly.
Kenya would then elect a new President in the form of Uhuru Kenyatta, a man who is said to have enjoyed a great level of friendship with President Al-Bashir.
Even during the 2-month protests to have Al-Bashir leave office, President Kenyatta assured him of Kenya’s unending support.
“Kenya will continue to support Sudan as it manages its internal affairs because the sovereignty of all Igad (Intergovernmental Authority on Development) member states is something of great importance to us. As a member of Igad, Sudan is a pillar of stability in the region,” President Kenyatta said.
In 2015, President Uhuru Kenyatta attended the inauguration of Omar Hassan Ahmed Bashir who had won an election that was marred with grave cases of rigging.
The people of Sudan were not happy with Al-Bashir’s leadership and he therefore had to do anything possible to retain power and this included rigging elections and later imposing himself on the people.
With President Kenyatta atending Bashir’s inaugration, he rubber stamped the rule of a dictator, a criminal and a warlord.
It will also be remembered that Prior to President Uhuru Kenyatta’s inaugration for his second term in 2017, The Kenya Section of the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ Kenya) wrote to Fred Matiangi, the then acting Minister for Internal Security and Attorney General Githu Muigai to arrest Sudan President Omar Al Bashir if he dared came for the swearing in of President Kenyatta.
This is another clear indication that even Kenyans were not happy with the manner in which Bashir was treating the people of Sudan.
As Kenyans and the people of Sudan prayed for Al-Bashir’s fall, Kenyan leaders were dining with him, lifting him high and massaging his rogue character.
President Kenyatta has made visits to Sudan to hold talks with Al-Bashir. His Deputy, William Ruto has also not been left behind in this regard.
In August Last Year, Ruto met Omar Al-Bashir in Khartoum, with focus to strengthen trade and investments between the two nations.
The leaders particularly stressed the need to enhance cooperation in areas of manufacturing, agro-processing, textiles and healthcare among other areas.
President Bashir and Mr Ruto agreed that Sudan and Kenya require agricultural and irrigation expertise to assist the country attain its food security, which is one of the Government’s Big Four agenda in the next five years.
Well, it is not bad for Nations to cooperate on matters of mutual interests but the fact that Kenya decided to cooperate with a warlord set a bad precedence to the people of Africa and the entire world.
If only Kenya had arrested Al-Bashir as requested by the ICC or stopped having ties with Sudan, the people of the great Nation would have been enjoying good leadership anchored on prosperity by now.