The Struggle Against Impunity in Kenya: Transitional Justice without
the Transition - or the Justice
University of Ottawa
In this talk, Stephen Brown will analyze the various accountability mechanisms for the mass atrocities committed in Kenya after the December 2007 elections. These include the International Criminal Court's ongoing investigations, the proposals for a special national or hybrid tribunal, and the activities of Kenya's Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission. He argues that as long as high-level perpetrators and their allies remain in government, there are few reasons to believe that more than a handful of individuals will be held accountable. Though even a few convictions would be a remarkable break from Kenya's record of total impunity, it is unrealistic to expect the country's transitional justice mechanisms to serve as an effective deterrent against future electoral violence.
Stephen Brown is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Ottawa. His main research interests are foreign aid, democratization, political violence, conflict prevention and peacebuilding, mainly in relation to Sub-Saharan Africa. He is currently working on two research projects. The first is on Canadian aid policy in comparative perspective. The second analyzes accountability mechanisms for the 2007-08 post-election violence in Kenya, conducted jointly with Chandra Lekha Sriram of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. .