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Lawyers for Kenya poll chaos victims get green light

Tuesday April 24 2012

Photo/FILE  The victims in the case against Mr William Ruto and Mr Joshua arap Sang are represented by Ms Sureta Chana.

Photo/FILE The victims in the case against Mr William Ruto and Mr Joshua arap Sang are represented by Ms Sureta Chana. 

By OLIVER MATHENGE [email protected]

Lawyers representing victims in the Kenyan cases at The Hague can continue doing so, the International Criminal Court Appeals Chamber has said.

But it would be up to the court’s registry to determine the payment of the lawyers’ work, the Appeals judges said.

In their Monday ruling, the judges said the two lawyers could continue representing the victims in the appeals before them unless the agreement between them was terminated.

They said it was up to the Trial Chamber to determine whether the same lawyers would represent the victims in the trial.

“If the Pre-Trial Chamber had wanted to limit the mandate of the legal representative, from the start, to the proceedings before the Pre-Trial Chamber, thereby modifying the provisions on the duration of a representation agreement under article 17 of the Code, it would have had to do so expressly,” the judges said.

The victims in the case against Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta and Mr Francis Muthaura are represented by Mr Morris Anyah while those in the case against Mr William Ruto and Mr Joshua arap Sang are represented by Ms Sureta Chana.

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The judges noted that the decision by the registry not to continue paying the lawyers did not rule out that future activities of the legal representative may be remunerated through the Court’s legal aid scheme.

But for payment to be made, such activities “must be authorised beforehand by the registry.”

The two lawyers had made their applications to the Appeals Chamber after they were informed that their mandate had lapsed with the expiry of the pre-trial proceedings.