Options for Transitional Justice in Kenya: Autonomy and the Challenge of External Prescriptions

The International Journal of Transitional Justice, 2009, 1–20, doi: 10.1093/ijtj/ijp018

20 Pages Posted: 17 Jan 2014 Last revised: 23 Apr 2014

Godfrey Mukhaya Musila

Africa Center for Strategic Studies, National Defence University, Pentagon

Date Written: January 16, 2014

Abstract

While there is broad agreement among key partners in Kenya’s government of national unity (GNU) on the need to implement transitional justice measures, the lack of a coherent approach by the government has to date hampered the debate in significant ways and will determine the future efficacy of any mechanism adopted. Key areas of concern include the efforts by political elites to capture the debate; the silencing of important voices; a failure to identify and define all key issues to be addressed by any transitional justice mechanisms employed; and a failure to fully understand the role of external institutions, such as the International Criminal Court (ICC). The article reviews the evolving transitional justice debate in Kenya and assesses the accountability options available, noting in particular the role of international norms and institutions in influencing the feasibility of local options. In this regard, the article interrogates key questions related to autonomy, including the question of whose justice and which mechanisms will be taken forward in the Kenyan context and how this will be determined.

Keywords: Kenya, international criminal court, truth commission, options for justice

Suggested Citation

Musila, Godfrey Mukhaya, Options for Transitional Justice in Kenya: Autonomy and the Challenge of External Prescriptions (January 16, 2014). The International Journal of Transitional Justice, 2009, 1–20, doi: 10.1093/ijtj/ijp018. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2380007

Godfrey Mukhaya Musila (Contact Author)

Africa Center for Strategic Studies, National Defence University, Pentagon ( email )

Fort Lesley McNair
Washington, DC, 20319-50
United States

HOME PAGE: http://africacenter.org/programs/

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