Mrs Victoire Ingabire About False Allegations in the New Times
Here follows the letter addressed to The New Times in Kigali, about the diffamatory campaign orchestrated by its journalists after her visit to the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre at Gisozi.
Chief Executive Officer
The New Times Publications SARL
Immeuble Aigle Blanc
P. O. Box 4953
Kigali – Rwanda
Right of rectification and reply to libels published in Sunday Times on 17th January 2010 and The New Times of 18th January 2010:
o The Sunday Times of 17th January 2010 – Editorial – “FDU’s Ingabire desecrates memory with Double Genocide theory”
o The Sunday Times of 17th January 2010- Front page: News – Ingabire espouses Double Genocide Theory
o The New Times of 18th January 2010 – Editorial – “Genocide deniers: the law should take its course”
o The New Times 18th January 2010 – Front page: news – “Govt won't stand violation of the laws-interior Minister”
o The New Times 18th January 2010 – Front page: news – “Political Parties, CNLG slam Ingabire 'divisionist' politics
As the chairperson of FDU Inkingi, I have been subject of a deliberate and continuous heinous and/defamatory campaign in your newspapers accusing FDU Inkingi’ public intervention at the Gisozi memorial site of Genocide denier, double Genocide Theory, desecrating memorial, divisionist’ politics, inflammatory statements, and many other shameless insults. The worst was to maliciously spread serious accusations related to the genocide, the most severe crime against humanity historically
I would strongly like to set the record straight regarding the genocide against Tutsi in Rwanda. My position is still and has always been that the genocide against Tutsi took place in Rwanda and all criminals should be brought to book.
I am disappointed by the hatred propaganda, violent, offensive and injurious language towards my person and the FDU Inkingi I represent. It is unfortunate that my words were intentionally twisted. Readers of your papers are purposely made to believe in the content of those offending articles based on untrue facts.
On 16th January 2010, after my visit to the Kigali Genocide Memorial Center at Gisozi, I made the following announcement in Kinyarwanda, which was also recorded and is here translated in English, the language of your media:
‘It is clear that achieving reconciliation has a long way to go; it is far away and this is understandable considered the number of people who were massacred in our country, because such tragedy is not something to move on from easily on the one hand. On the other, when you analyse the situation objectively, you don’t find any serious strategy intentionally developed and implemented to help Rwandans to achieve that reconciliation. For example, we are here honouring at this Memorial the Tutsi victims of the Genocide; there are also Hutu who were victims of crimes against humanity and war crimes, not remembered or honoured here. Hutus are also suffering. They are wondering when their time will come to remember their people.
In order for us to get to that desirable reconciliation, we must be fair and compassionate towards every Rwandan’s suffering. It is imperative that for Tutsi survivors, Hutu who killed their relatives understand the crimes they committed and accept the legal consequences.
It is also crucial that those who may have killed Hutus understand that they must be equally punished by the laws.
It is finally very important for all of us Rwandans with our different ethnic backgrounds to understand that we need to come together in unity and with mutual respect in order to develop our country peacefully.
The reason we came back is therefore to find ways collectively of starting off on that roadmap towards unity, working jointly to remove injustices from our country, addressing as one issues of getting Rwandans to live freely in their country.
Based on my declarations, all those false accusations and the subsequent hate propaganda are baseless and ill-intentioned. It would’ve been better that the reporters contacted me to get my side of the story prior to publishing those inflammatory allegations. I would like also to draw your attention to similar stories aired by other independent media in this respect.
It’s hard to believe that Rwandan journalists write on tragic issues with so much bias and lack of objectivity. One of the FDU INKINGI policy principles is not to entertain any discrimination or injustice among the Rwandan living and the dead.
I shall be most grateful if you could find some space in your next editorials of your newspapers' and on front pages for the relevant clarifications.
Victoire Umuhoza Ingabire
FDU Inkingi Chairperson
CC: – The Minister of Internal Affairs,
– Press house
Document attached: Press release on Gisozi Visit.