‘We have moved on’: human rights and intersubjectivity in post- 2007/2008 violence in Kenya

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 16
  • Abstract:

    In September 2010, the International Criminal Court Prosecutor, Moreno Ocampo, issued summons against six Kenyans suspected of bearing the greatest responsibility for crimes against humanity committed in Kenya after the bungled 2007 general elections. Immediately after the list of inductees was released, the political elites and their courtiers launched a campaign for Kenyans to reverse the human rights movements’ call for ‘truth-telling’ that had persisted since after flag independence. Using the notion of ‘our people’, those who had been named suspects and their supporters effectively reformulated the quest for ‘truth-telling’ to a silencing rhetoric captured by the political elites’ and victims’ declaration as “we have moved on”. I argue that this notion of ‘moving on’ is part of Kenya’s political culture that has for long enveloped gross human rights violations and stifled discussions and quests for any form of justice in Kenya’s post-conflict environment. This article gives an account of how postcolonial subjectivities interrupt and complicate the discourse of ‘moving on’ in Kenya.