Newly-elected African Union Chairman and Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe, has reportedly urged African leaders to boycott the International Criminal Court (ICC) and appealed to them to instead set up an African criminal court to deal with crimes against humanity.
His call echoes sentiments by African leaders who have long criticised the ICC as a western imperial arm and biased against Africans.
Mugabe, himself a Pan Africanist, went on to criticise African leaders whom he says continue to submit themselves to the ICC’s imperial authority.
Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy were recently cleared of crimes against the humanity. He was the first sitting head of state to appear before the court.
“I am disappointed with Kenyatta for subjecting himself to the authority of a European Court. I am saying he must return to that court. It is an embarrassment to his father, a founding father of African Unity,” Mugabe said.
Sudan President, Omar El Bashir, has a pending warrant of arrest for genocide and countries such as South Africa, who are signatories to the ICC, have a duty to arrest him should he land on their soil.
Mugabe says the continent needs to change its operations to become more autonomous by weaning itself from dependence on Western donor aid and funding.