Rwanda Information Portal

South Africa says no decision yet on return to Rwanda of recalled ambassador Gwadiso

Pretoria – The recalled South African ambassador to Rwanda has not returned to Kigali, the South African Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) said Monday – disputing media reports.

Media reports had suggested over the weekend that ambassador Gladstone Dumisani Gwadiso had been cleared to return to Kigali. Pretoria recalled him for what was described then as consultations following a spat with Kigali over the shooting in Johannesburg of exiled Rwandan Gen Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa.

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) said in statement Monday that it had “noted with regret and dismay” about the reports of Ambassador Gwadiso’s departure for Kigali.

DIRCO never confirmed the departure of Ambassador Gwadiso

“The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) has noted with regret and dismay of yesterday’s media report by City Press misrepresenting the department’s position with regard to the departure of Ambassador Gwadiso to Rwanda.
The department would like to categorically clarify that the Ambassador of South Africa to Rwanda is still in South Africa and we still have to finalise as to when he will return to Rwanda.”

For further information please contact Chief Director for Public Diplomacy Mr Saul K. Molobi on +27 82 940 1647, +27 12 351 0083 or email him at molobisk@dirco.gov.za.

In Kigali, President Kagame said after winning reelection on August 09 that relations with South Africa were excellent. The Rwandan envoy there is working without any changes.

August 24, 2010   1 Comment

Rwandan Prosecutor withdraws appeal against bail granted to opposition politicians from PS-Imberakuri and FDU-Inkingi

Bernard Ntaganda in court with his co-accused members of opposition party PS-Imberakuri

Bernard Ntaganda in court earlier this year with his co-accused members of opposition party PS-Imberakuri

Kigali – Seven opposition politicians from PS-Imberakuri and FDU-Inkingi appeared on Monday before the High Court.

Prosecution withdrew its appeal against the bail granted by a lower court to the seven including Theogene Muhayeyezu – UDF-Inkingi’s lawyer; Sylvere Mwizerwa – a member of PS Imberakuri; Theobald Mutarambirwa, Sylvain Sibomana, Martin Ntavuka and Jean Baptiste Icyitonderwa.

Speaking to reporters, Maitre Gatera Gashabana, the lawyer defending opposition politician Bernard Ntaganda and his colleagues, welcomed the decision of the state to end its quest to have the seven accused behind bars.

The prosecution did not say exactly why it had chosen to respect the bail decision of the lower court.

The case starts next month as well.

August 24, 2010   No Comments

Prosecutor wants life sentence for Rwandan opposition figure Deo Mushayidi

Deo Mushayidi (Chair of PDP-Imanzi) in court

Deo Mushayidi (Chair of PDP-Imanzi) in court

Kigali – The embattled opposition politician Deogratias Mushayidi will wait for another month before he knows whether he goes free or stays in jail for the rest of his life as demanded by the state over seven serious charges.

In its closing arguments Monday, state prosecutor Bonaventure Ruberwa prayed to the High Court in Kigali to slam a maximum sentence on the controversial politician extradited from Burundi in March. The state also wants Mushayidi to pay a fine of 300,000 Francs, in addition to court costs.

Mushayidi was arrested in Tanzania, which handed him to Burundi that immediately transferred him to Rwanda on March 5. The state has filed seven charges against the head of the yet-to-be-registered exile-based PDP Imanzi party. In July, the Nyarugenge Intermediate Court refused to grant bail to Mushayidi. He had to stay in the maximum security prison ‘1930’ for the rest of the trial.

Among the charges include Genocide negationism, falsification of official documents and links to the DR Congo based FDRL rebels. Prosecution tabled hundreds of documents including email contacts between Mushayidi and the group, branded a terrorist entity.

Filing his closing defense, Mushayidi handled charge after another – accusing government of using politically motivated charges to keep him behind bars.

On Genocide ideology, Mushayidi said the charge is tantamount to mocking him because as he explained, he also lost members of his family during the 1994 Genocide.

As for the charge of collaborating with the terrorist group FDLR, Mushayidi prayed to court to summon the former members of the FDLR who have surrendered to Rwanda. He wants them to testify whether they know him as having been one of their members.

Among the high-profile ex-combatants are current deputy head of the demobilization commission Maj Gen Paul Rwarakabije, and top army Gen. Jerome Ngendahimana. Both surrendered in 2003. Hundreds of other senior officials have since put down their arms.

Responding to the charge of using forged documents, Mushayidi admitted that he was using false documents saying that he was carrying a Burundian passport because he never wanted to be detected. He however, maintained the document was official.

Mushayidi also denied the charge of trying to undermine state authority in many of his publications and speeches.

Court said it will rule on the case on September 17.

August 24, 2010   No Comments