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Former Rwandan spy chief Patrick Karegeya last seen with ‘trusted’ friend

Rwanda’s late former spy chief Patrick Karegeya was last seen with a Rwandan businessman who befriended the victim in jail, says a Rwandan ex-general.

Patrick Karegeya

Patrick Karegeya

A Rwandan ex-general who has survived two assassination attempts says the man who was last seen with the ex-spymaster killed in a South African hotel was a Rwandan businessperson who befriended the victim in a Rwandan jail.

Police say former Colonel Patrick Karegeya’s body, apparently strangled, was found on Wednesday in Sandton’s Michelangelo Hotel along with a bloodied towel and rope.

Former Lieutenant General Kayumba Nyamwasa said on Saturday that Karegeya was last seen by a family member at the hotel with Apollo Ismael Kisiriri.

Nyamwasa said he had twice met Karegeya with Kisiriri and that “he [Karegeya] trusted him absolutely … but now one is dead.”

Exiled opponents accuse Rwandan President Paul Kagame of ordering Karegeya’s assassination and 2010 attempts on Nyamwasa’s life in the South African city of Johannesburg.

‘Exploring all avenues’
Meanwhile, Gauteng police and the Hawks on Friday said the hunt for the killer of Karegeya continued.

“We are exploring all avenues,” Hawks spokesperson Captain Paul Ramaloko said.

Lieutenant Colonel​ Katlego Mogale said she could not immediately comment on developments in the investigation. She would neither confirm nor deny reports that security camera footage from the hotel formed part of the investigation.

“It is police procedure, where a crime was committed and CCTV footage of the scene exists, [for it] to be viewed by investigators.”

Mogale said on Thursday that when Karegeya’s body was found, his neck was swollen.

“There is a possibility that he might have been strangled,” she said.

Suspect ‘Apollo Kiririsi’
On Friday, the New Age reported that Kiririsi was allegedly being sought in connection with the murder.

Karegeya’s nephew David Batenga reportedly told the newspaper that he and his uncle had picked Kiririsi up from a Gautrain station and taken him to the Michelangelo Hotel.

Batenga left the men after a few hours, and tried to call Karegeya on his cellphone on Tuesday evening but received no response. The police were alerted when Karegeya’s phone was still switched off the following morning, the newspaper reported.

Sapa; Sapa-AP

January 5, 2014   No Comments

Karegeya assassination: Anatomy of a Rwandan spy boss murder in South Africa

by Jacques Pauw.

Patrick Karegeya

Colonel Patrick Karegeya (right) and his nephew David Batenga

It seems the Kagame regime will stop at nothing to stamp out dissidents and detractors, even if it means hunting them abroad, Jacques Pauwreports.
How ironic that a maestro of assassination could fall prey to the same plots and ploys he had once used.
The same regime that former Rwandan external military intelligence chief Colonel Patrick Karegeya defended with blood ostensibly turned on him this week and left him lifeless in a swanky hotel room.
Dissident compatriots of the 54-year-old Karegeya were dumbfounded that the former Rwandan spymaster could so easily be lured into a death trap set for him at Sandton’s Michelangelo Hotel.
A top police unit is now searching for a Rwandan palm oil trader by the name of Apollo Kiririsi, who had a meeting with Karegeya at lunchtime on the last day of 2013.
By the time Karegeya’s body was discovered almost 20 hours later, Kiririsi had vanished. There is no record of him at the hotel as the room was booked under Karegeya’s name.
The Hawks’ Crimes Against the State unit is probing the probability that Kiririsi is a Rwandan agent who had befriended Karegeya over the past year to set him up for murder.
Karegeya had picked Kiririsi up on December 29 at the Sandton Gautrain station and took him to the Michelangelo Hotel.
Kiririsi said he had just flown in from Abu Dhabi. At around 2pm on Tuesday, Karegeya went to the hotel for his fatal meeting.
The slightly chubby Karegeya, a law graduate from Uganda’s Makerere University, fought back. He is said to have been trained by the Mossad and is a veteran of two of Africa’s bloodiest civil wars.
Karegeya was strangled and had no wounds, but there was blood in the room. At least one of his assailants left the hotel wounded.

Another political assassination?

Critics of Rwanda President Paul Kagame say the murder carries the hallmark of yet another assassination carried out by the bespectacled strongman’s intelligence forces.
Supporters of the regime, however, point to Kagame’s accomplishments in bringing stability and limited prosperity to his troubled nation.
Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have for years documented the complicity of Kagame’s security forces in the killing of his opponents across the continent.
The UN has accused Kagame of fomenting rebellion in the eastern Congo and recently found that his forces might have committed acts of genocide in the region.
In the country itself, opposition politicians are either in prison or dead, journalists have been jailed and political parties have been banned.
Kigali has, predictably, denied that it targets political dissidents and claims that Rwanda is a budding democracy in which there is increasing space for political opposition.

Why Karegeya came

Karegeya sneaked into South Africa in February 2008, claimed refugee status and settled in Joburg.
His arrival followed a fallout with Kagame, just three years his senior. He was arrested and jailed for “indiscipline” and stripped of his rank in 2006.
Kagame and Karegeya fought side by side in the Ugandan rebel movement that brought Yoweri Museveni to power in 1986 in Uganda.
Museveni then allowed them to form their own Tutsi rebel movement, the Rwandan Patriotic Front.
It came to power in 1994 when it ended the genocide in Rwanda in which some 800 000 Rwandans died.
Karegeya wielded enormous power as Rwanda’s external military chief and was once in Kagame’s inner circle.
He was also credited with hunting down the enemies of the post-genocide regime across the region.
Fingers have pointed at him for, among other things, the assassination of former Rwandan interior minister Seth Sendashonga in 1998.
Sendashonga was appointed as a minister after the genocide, but then found evidence of the new regime’s complicity in post-genocide massacres and abuses.
He sent his findings to Kagame – and in doing so effectively signed his own death warrant.
Sendashonga fled to Kenya and then Tanzania, where he continued compiling his incriminating dossier against Kagame. He was gunned down in 1998, days before he was due to testify before the UN’s International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.
The Rwandan ambassador in Kenya and Karegeya were accused of being the masterminds behind the killing.
The ambassador was recalled to Rwanda, where he was inexplicably murdered.
Karegeya said in an interview after his arrival in South Africa that he would “tell all” when the time was right.
It would have been a confession that Kagame could ill afford.

The gang of four

In March 2010, Karegeya became one of the so-called Gang of Four when three more former Kagame confidants fled Rwanda.
Kagame’s former chief of staff, Dr Theogene Rudasingwa, and Rwanda’s former attorney-general, Gerard Gahima, settled in the US while former army chief General Kayumba Nyamwasa chose South Africa.
The Gang of Four became instrumental in establishing the Rwandan National Congress (RNC), a multi-ethnic political movement that wants Kagame voted out of power.
The Rwandan government has outlawed the movement and a farcical military tribunal sentenced the Gang of Four to long-term imprisonment.
Nyamwasa survived two assassination attempts in Joburg in June 2010. In one of the attempts, he was shot and wounded in the stomach.
A Rwandan intelligence agent and his accomplices are now on trial in Joburg and evidence has been presented that the very top of Rwandan intelligence ordered the shooting.
The court was told about tape recordings in which the head of Rwandan military intelligence discussed the assassination of Nyamwasa and Karegeya with intelligence recruits in South Africa.
Following the failed attempt on Nyamwasa, South Africa recalled its ambassador to Rwanda for more than a year.
Both Nyamwasa and Karegeya were placed in a defence intelligence protection programme, but in September 2011, City Press unearthed another plot to kill Nyamwasa when Rwandan intelligence hired a private security firm to find out where the general was being housed.
They also recruited Rwandan refugees as assassins to shoot him.
Defence intelligence hastily moved Nyamwasa to another location. Although he is still under protection, in 2011 Karegeya left the programme, saying he had to earn a living and needed to move around.
Karegeya lived alone in the upmarket and highly secure Featherbrooke estate near Krugersdorp, on Gauteng’s West Rand.
His wife and two sons lived in the US and his daughter in Canada.
When the Americans killed Osama bin Laden in May 2011, the Rwandan government mouthpiece, the New Times, warned Nyamwasa and Karegeya: “You can run. You can hide. But you won’t escape.”

A nephew’s concern

Rwandan refugee David Batenga repeatedly warned his uncle not to trust the businessman that claimed to be a sympathiser of the RNC.
“Kiririsi said Kagame is a dictator and should go,” said Batenga. “My uncle fell for him and started trusting him.”
Karegeya knew that he was living in the shadow of Kagame’s henchmen. In 2012, the chairperson of the RNC in Africa, Frank Ntwali, was attacked and stabbed 12 times. He survived.
In the same year, the sister-in-law of the African secretary-general of the RNC, Pretoria attorney Kennedy Gihana, confessed that she was recruited by Rwandan intelligence to set him up for murder.
The State Security Agency (SSA) warned the leadership of the RNC in the same year that they face imminent danger.
The Rwandan government cancelled their and their families’ passports.
In the past two years, Rwandan exiles in the UK were warned by local security agents of a Kigali plot to kill them.
Sweden and Belgium deported Rwandan diplomats for spying on Rwandan refugees.

Batenga warned Karegeya on Tuesday: “I don’t think it is safe for you to go alone to this meeting.”
Batenga sent Karegeya a phone message at 7.47pm to make sure he was okay.
He received a message back not to be worried.
We don’t know if Karegeya wrote the message or when the killers pounced, but last time the card key for the room in the posh hotel was used was just after 8pm.
Batenga called Karegeya at midnight to wish him a happy new year.
He did not answer any of his three cell phones.
Batenga identified Karegeya’s swollen and badly-bruised body the next afternoon.
“How could Karegeya have walked into this trap?” Batenga asked. “It shows you the regime will stop at nothing to get us.”

A race to arms

Some of the RNC’s office bearers don’t sleep in their own beds and those who qualify for gun licences have armed themselves.
“We are scared and we don’t know what’s coming next,” Gihana admits.
He was recently in hospital after a car accident and his family had to keep its name a secret.
Gihana wants to meet authorities and demand protection for RNC members. He also wants to know how it is possible for foreign agents to operate so freely in South Africa.
The assassination of Karegeya poses a massive foreign policy dilemma for government.
When Nyamwasa was shot in 2010, it almost led to a breakdown of diplomatic relations.
Should the Hawks find evidence that Rwanda had a hand in the killing, South Africa will be compelled to act against the man once described as the West’s “darling dictator”.
For now, a group of Rwandan refugees who under the UN’s convention are entitled to protection from South Africa will continue to look over their shoulders and ask the question on everyone’s lips: who is next?

What government will do about it

International relations department spokesperson Clayson Monyela says government will not comment on the murder of Colonel Patrick Karegeya because a police investigation is under way.
He said the situation was not expected to cause diplomatic tensions between Rwanda and South Africa as there was no evidence linking the Rwandan government to Karegeya’s killing.
But another senior government official with high-level diplomatic ties suggested the case would cause diplomatic tensions, and that there should be consequences if a link to the Rwandan government can be established.
The killing of Karegeya on our soil was a diplomatic issue that government should have responded to, the official said.
“Sincerely, from a diplomatic point of view, something like this is not acceptable. It undermines diplomatic relations which are based on mutual respect.
“It also undermines the agenda of the African continent which is moving away from getting rid of people like this.
“Africans are just tired of this,” said the official.
The official said Pretoria’s decision to shelter people who are at odds with their governments had caused tension with Zimbabwe, Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Nigeria, but said their governments had come to accept that South Africa was bound by its human rights laws and international conventions.
“It has not been easy for South Africa to keep people who are in a bad space with their own governments.
“It is not easy because we have relationships with those countries. But you can’t just bundle them and take them back to their countries.”
The Rwandans have not contacted South Africa following Karegeya’s killing, but the official said the South Africans will have to go through diplomatic channels if they wanted to raise concerns.
“We are fully engaging all our institutions that are supposed to deal with this matter. We don’t want our country to be one of those where people just come and kill other people.
“We also don’t want this thing of people settling scores by killing people. We don’t want it to take root. We’ve got a reputation to protect.” – Sabelo Ndlangisa

Source: citypress.co.za/ 5 January 2014.

January 5, 2014   No Comments

Karegeya assassination: South African Police hunt for Rwandan ex-spy chief’s killers

Police, Hawks hunt for Rwandan ex-spy chief’s killer

Patrick Karegeya

Former Rwandan spy chief Patrick Karegeya.

Johannesburg 3 January 2014 -The hunt for the killer of former Rwandan spy chief Patrick Karegeya is continuing, say Gauteng police and the Hawks.

“We are exploring all avenues,” Hawks spokesperson Captain Paul Ramaloko said today.

Karegeya’s body was found in a hotel room at the Michelangelo Towers Hotel in Sandton, at about 5.30pm on Wednesday.

Lt-Col Katlego Mogale said she could not immediately comment on developments in the investigation.

She would neither confirm nor deny reports that security camera footage from the hotel is forming part of the investigation.

“It is police procedure, where a crime was committed and CCTV footage of the scene exists [for it] to be viewed by investigators.”

Mogale said yesterday that when Karegeya’s body was found, his neck was swollen.

A bloodied towel and rope were found in the hotel room safe.

“There is a possibility that he might have been strangled,” she said.

Karegeya (53) booked into the hotel on Sunday. He was the former head of Rwanda’s external intelligence service and had been living in exile in South Africa for several years.

Today, The New Age reported that a man identified as Apollo Kiririsi was allegedly being sought in connection with the murder.

Karegeya’s nephew David Batenga reportedly told the newspaper that he and his uncle had picked Kiririsi up from a Gautrain station and taken him to the hotel.

Batenga left the men after a few hours. He tried to call Karegeya on his cellphone on Tuesday evening but received no response. The police were alerted when Karegeya’s phone was still switched off the next morning, the newspaper reported.

– Sapa

January 5, 2014   No Comments

Rwanda denies involvement in Patrick Karegeya’s assassination

PEOPLE PLAYING POLITICS WITH KAREGEYA DEATH SAYS RWANDAN AMBASSADOR

Patrick Karegeya

Patrick Karegeya

In the wake of the death of 53 year old Patrick Karegeya (PK) the exiled former spy chief of Rwanda, the country’s High Commissioner to South Africa has reacted to allegations that this was a hit organised by the Rwandan government.

“I heard the sad news that PK passed on yesterday afternoon. It is sad that he can be killed, we don’t know who did it. It is just bad news,” said Ambassador Vincent Karega in an interview with local TV station ENCA.

Karegeya was found dead on New Years Day at the Michelangelo Towers, an upmarket hotel in the Johannesburg suburb of Sandton in South Africa. Reports indicate he had gone to attend a meeting at the hotel when he was ‘murdered’. The circumstances leading to his death remain unknown. The South African police are conducting investigations although the Rwandan opposition party, the Rwanda National Congress (RNC) said in a statement to AFP that “He was strangled by agents of (Rwandan President Paul) Kagame”.

Amb. Vincent Karega

Amb. Vincent Karega

In an interview with The African Professional (Expatriate) last year, Ambassador Karega indicated that SA has granted political asylum to a number of Rwandans living in South Africa. He stated that the death of any dissident is unfairly blamed on the government.
“That is an emotional reaction and opportunistic way of playing politics. South Africa is an organised country with police and the hotel is in a posh area with security features. PK has been living here for a number of years so you have to wonder why he would be killed now and why in a hotel when he has a home. It is unfortunate that any problem is put on government. There are a number of Rwandans living here who do not belong to any political organisation. Some have been killed by robbers or accidents and it is accepted as normal. But if a so called dissident is killed, then they play it politically,” Karega told ENCA.
Twitter: @vincentkarega

Source: africanpro.co.za

January 4, 2014   No Comments

Darling of the West, terror to his opponents: Meet Rwanda’s new scourge – Paul Kagame

by IAN BIRRELL.

Rwandan President Paul Kagame

Paul Kagame’s rivals keep dying, but Clinton and Blair still shake his hand, writes Ian Birrell

Friday 03 January 2014

Patrick Karegeya knew Paul Kagame well. The pair went to school together, worked alongside each other in Ugandan intelligence and then fought to free their country from the genocidal gangsters who unleashed horror in their native Rwanda. When Kagame became president, Karegeya was put in charge of foreign intelligence services.

But after a decade, their disagreements, including over human rights and attacks on neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, became too strong. He was relieved of his duties, stripped of his rank as colonel and jailed. Once free he fled, later joining forces with three other prominent exiles to lead opposition to Kagame’s government.

Knowing the Rwandan president so well, Karegeya was under no illusions what might happen to him, especially after his friend Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa was shot in the stomach in South Africa in 2010. “The Rwandan government can no longer tolerate any dissent,” he said last year. “There is a deliberate plan to finish us off.”

Now the plain-speaking Karegeya is dead, his brutalised body discovered in the room of a luxury South African hotel. A murder investigation has been launched. It seems he was strangled, a rope from the hotel curtains found with a bloodied towel in the safe.

Patrick Karegeya

Patrick Karegeya was found dead in a luxury South African hotel

Rwandan officials deny any complicity. They always do, of course. It is part of the regime’s tactics, their smart diplomats throwing up smokescreens while smearing enemies and exploiting global sympathy for the genocide.

But Nyamwasa, a former Rwandan army chief who has survived two assassination attempts, asked who else might want to kill his friend. “It is not the first time and it is not the last. Most of President Kagame’s political opposition are in exile or in prison or are dead.”

It may take time for the full facts to filter out. Initial reports say police want to interview a Rwandan man who met Karegeya at a rail station then went with him to the hotel in the upmarket suburb of Sandton.

Yet one thing is certain beyond the death of an important dissident. Enemies of Kagame – the despot so beloved by Western democratic leaders and charity dupes – seem to have a strange habit of dying in disturbing circumstances.

Over the years a succession of prominent critics and campaigners, judges and journalists, have been killed. They have been beaten, beheaded, shot and stabbed, both at home in Rwanda and abroad in nervous exile. Some were good people, others far from saints – and their deaths came after crossing Kagame.

“We don’t know the details of how and why Karegeya was murdered but there is a  long established pattern of assassination and attempted assassination of Rwandan  government critics,” said  Carina Tertsakian, senior researcher on Rwanda at Human Rights Watch.

Kagame’s strategy has been clear from the start of his rise to power; indeed, defectors and dissidents have explained in detail how the man gets rid of his rivals. “He believes that all opponents must die,” said Karegeya last year.

Those who served as his aides, army officers and bodyguards have said that even in exile during the days of bush warfare, he eliminated those who threatened his authority. After taking power following the 1994 genocide, his repressive regime used murder, arbitrary arrest, jail and strict media controls to sustain its incredibly rigid rule.

Former colleagues told me he never hid what would happen to enemies; even Paul Rusesabagina, the hotel manager who became a global hero amid the hell of genocide, had to go into hiding.

All too typical was the story of Seth Sendashonga, the respected Minister of the Interior in the post-genocide government. After protesting human rights abuses in a series of memoranda sent to Kagame, he was dismissed and went into exile in Kenya, where he became increasingly vocal against the government.

After surviving a first assassination ambush in February 1996, in which an arrested man with a firearm turned out to be an employee at the Rwandan embassy, he was shot dead in Nairobi two years later. The case bears similarities to the recent attacks in South Africa.

This killing of critics has happened with relentless regularity. There was a particularly nasty spate before the 2010 election, when not only was Nyamwasa targeted but a newspaper editor murdered, a rival politician found near-beheaded and even a Tanzanian law professor involved in a genocide case shot dead.

The following year Scotland Yard warned two exiles in Britain that a Rwandan hit squad had been sent to kill them, although they were not high-profile. Scandalously, even this did not stop the flow of British aid and adulation.

One of the targets was Rene Mugenzi, a father of three and Liberal Democrat activist. He had to cut off contact with many fellow Rwandan exiles in Britain for fear they might be government agents and still lives under a high state of security alert.

“This latest case is very troubling for me and my family,” he told me. “You just feel anything can happen, especially when nothing is done at the international level against Kagame. It is like he has a licence to kill.”

And this is the key point. For despite the murders, the abuse of human rights, the locking up of political rivals, the ceaseless and now well-documented stoking of carnage and conflict in the Congo, Kagame remains a leader lionised in Washington and Westminster.

The world’s foremost scholar on Rwanda has described him as “probably the worst war criminal in office today.” Another leading academic concluded he was running “a very well-managed ethnic, social and economic dictatorship”.

But Bill Clinton calls him “one of the greatest leaders of our time” while Tony Blair, who works closely with him and has borrowed his plush private jet, hails him as “a visionary leader”. There is similar adoration on the right among many Tories and Republicans; Rwanda was even welcomed into the Commonwealth four years ago.

This disgusting hypocrisy, fuelled by the desperate search for an aid success story, is underlined by Kagame’s intelligence chief meeting ministers in London despite being indicted by a Spanish judge, while Theogene Rudasingwa, a leading Kagame opponent based in the United States, is refused a visa.

Rudasingwa, Kagame’s former chief of staff and one of his key opponents alongside Karegeya, is dismayed by Western reluctance to acknowledge Kagame’s criminality despite a welter of evidence.

So was he scared following the latest apparent murder, I asked him on Friday? “No,” he replied. “This just makes me more determined. I know he is on a mission to kill all of us but we are going to fight him to the finishing line.”

These are brave words, given what has happened to so many of those who challenged Kagame. Yet Britain, to our lasting shame, continues to back the monstrous killer in Kigali.

Source: independent.co.uk

January 4, 2014   No Comments

Rwanda: RNC recounts Colonel Patrick Karegeya’s assassination in Johannesburg

RNC About Colonel Patrick Karegeya’s Assassination
Johannesburg 03 January 2014.
The Rwanda National Congress, a political movement against the dictatorship in Rwanda, is deeply saddened to announce the assassination of Col Patrick Karegeya on 31 December 2013 at the Michelangelo Towers in Sandton, Johannesburg.
The South African police is investigating the circumstances surrounding his killing. Meanwhile it has emerged that Col Patrick Karegeya last communicated with his nephew, Mr David Batenga for the last time at around 19:46 on the same night. Col Patrick Karegeya was still in the company of Mr Appollo Kiririsi Gafaranga, a businessman from Rwanda who it was claimed was in South Africa for business meetings.

Col Patrick Karegeya knew Mr Appollo Kiririsi Gafaranga from the time he was still head of external intelligence in President Paul Kagame’s government. Even when Col Patrick Karegeya’s misfortunes began and was jailed and ultimately had to flee the country, he kept the relationship with Mr Appollo Kiririsi Gafaranga and hosted him in his house on the latter’s previous visits to South Africa. However on his recent visit, Mr Appollo Kiririsi Gafaranga informed Col Patrick Karegeya that he would have busy meetings and that it would be improper to hold those meetings at Col Patrick Karegeya’s house. He asked Col Patrick Karegeya to book him a hotel in an easily accessible area, which Col Patrick Karegeya did, as he had done with many other guests. He chose the Michelangelo Towers for him.

Mr Appollo Kiririsi Gafaranga and Col Patrick Karegeya intermittently met on 29 and 30 December 2013. They were again together on 31 December 2013 and Col Patrick Karegeya last communicated with his nephew, Mr David Batenga around 19:46 confirming that he was indeed with Mr Appollo Kiririsi Gafaranga and all was well. As the year was ending that night and people exchanged New Year wishes, Col Patrick Karegeya’s family calling from overseas was surprised that he was not answering his phone. Although Mr David Batenga called and got no response he told the family not to worry as he knew where and who he was with.

The morning of 01 January 2014, Mr David Batenga who regularly communicates with his uncle, was surprised that Col Patrick Karegeya had not left any message. He suspected that something may have gone wrong and decided to go and see his uncle at his house since all his phones were off and the landline rang without an answer. He could not get in the house and did not see his uncle’s car. He therefore went to the Sandton hotel to inquire as he knew it is where he could probably be with his guest Mr Appollo Kiririsi Gafaranga. But due to hotel protocol Mr David Batenga was not allowed to access the room but he insisted that the hotel calls the police. He remained at the hotel until the police arrived. The hotel receptionist informed him that the guest was dead. Mr David Batenga was later allowed to get in the room around 19H30 to 20H00 and recognised the body as that of his uncle, Col Patrick Karegeya.
Col Patrick Karegeya was a founding member of the Rwanda National Congress and a key figure in the Rwandan opposition to President Paul Kagame. Rwandan opposition key figures have been a target in South Africa and the rest of the world. Gen Kayumba Nyamwasa, another founding member of the Rwanda National Congress survived two assassination attempts in Johannesburg in June 2010. Investigations have found overwhelming evidence of the involvement of Rwanda intelligence operatives in those assassination attempts.

Col Patrick Karegeya was a courageous soldier who died on the battlefield. His vision for an inclusive and free Rwandan society earned him the admiration and respect of most Rwandan political actors, both in the predominantly Tutsi ruling party and in the predominantly Hutu opposition political parties. It is this leadership that played a crucial role in the formation of the Rwanda National Congress, a political movement that brings together both Hutu and Tutsi political activists and has strategic alliances with other key opposition political groups, such as the FDU Inkingi and the Amahoro People’s Congress.

By killing its opponents, the criminal regime in Kigali seeks to intimidate and silence the Rwandan people into submission.
Examples of those assassinated abound:
– Mr John Sengati (murdered in Rwanda),
– Col Theoneste Lizinde and Mr Seth Sendashonga (killed in Nairobi, Kenya),
– Col Shabani Rutayisire and
– Mr Gratien Munyarubuga,
– Dr Assiel Kabera,
– Mr Andre Kagwa Rwisereka and many others (killed in Rwanda),
– Ms Regina Uwamaliya and Mr Juvenal Uwilingiyimana (murdered in Brussels, Belgium),
– journalist Charles Ingabire (assassinated in Kampala, Uganda)
– and Mr Pasteur Musabe (killed in Cameroon),
…. the list is endless.
Rwandans however are not deterred in their quest for freedom, rule of law and democracy. Such criminal activities make Rwandan people even more determined to struggle to remove Kagame’s dictatorship.

The security of exiled Rwandans will remains a concern as long as Kagame’s quest for the annihilation of dissenting voices, to the extent of hunting them down, is not properly dealt with by the countries hosting Rwandan refugees.

Rwanda National Congress petitions the South African government to double efforts to protect Rwandan refugees on its soil, particularly to mitigate the threat posed by Rwandan government’s operatives within the republic.
Details of Col Patrick Karegeya’s memorial services as well as funeral arrangements will be communicated soon.

For further details:
Dr Theogene Rudasingwa, Coordinator, Rwanda National Congress
Email: ngombwa@gmail.com
Mr David Batenga, Family member
Tel: 0794544651, Email: muriisab@gmail.com
Mr Frank Ntwali, Chairman, Rwanda National Congress South Africa
Tel: 0767778735, Email: ntwali4justice@gmail.com

January 4, 2014   No Comments

Will Nyamwasa and his RNC-RPF associates tell the truth now after Karegeya’s assassination?

by Bosco Mutarambirwa.
Paul Kagame managed to assassinate Col. Patrick Karegeya today, but his death may generate unintended consequences. It may start a string of more detailed revelations on behalf of the surviving RNC trio, i.e., Theogene Rudasingwa, Gerald Gahima, and Inshuti Za Kayumba Nyamwasa. Yes there is a possibility that some of the revelations may circle back to them (as they may have helped perpetrate certain crimes), but only the truth will set them free.

As a fellow Rwandan put it earlier today, if the trio genuinely opt for the peace and democracy; they would say the truth and seek for forgiveness. In fact, I believe Karegeya had essentially been forgiven by many victims before his death. The trio’s revelations are likely to have a bigger impact than Lt. Abdul Ruzibiza’s, mainly because they were high ranking insiders within RPF; as opposed yo Ruzibiza who was essentially a lower ranking outsider (a young tutsi who had briefly lived in Burundi), who coincidently happened to have access to certain top secrets (the like of Manning or Snowden in the US). It is understandable that the trio is in a tough spot, but the alternative is death. The trio’s revelations may have to swallow their pride and commit to personal sacrifices so they can help the much needed healing process of the Rwandan community.

Let us wait and see how the story unfolds in the coming weeks and month. In my view, there’s no doubt that – by slaughtering his former top spy – Paul Kagame has dug himself an even deeper hole.

January 2, 2014   2 Comments

Rwandan opponent Patrick Karegeya assassinated in Johannesburg (South Africa)

Colonel Patrick Karegeya

Colonel Patrick Karegeya

RWANDA /BREAKING NEWS
Amahoro People’s Congress – FDU-INKINGI – RNC
Washington DC, January 1, 2014
Colonel Patrick Karegeya has been assassinated today in Johannesburg (South Africa).

The Rwandan opposition is deeply saddened to announce the assassination of Colonel Patrick Karegeya today in Johannesburg, South Africa. His body was found in a Hotel where he went for a meeting. The South African authorities are investigating the murder.

Colonel Patrick Karegeya was a key figure in the Rwandan opposition and a founding member of the Rwanda National Congress. Rwandan opposition key figures have been a target in South Africa and other parts of the world. We all remember our colleague General Kayumba Nyamwasa who survived two assassination attempts in Johannesburg on June 18, 2010 and June 20, 2010. Investigations have found overwhelming evidence of the involvement of Rwandan Intelligence operatives in those attempts.

By killing its opponents, the criminal regime in Kigali seeks to intimidate and silence the Rwandan people into submission. The regime is hugely mistaken. Such criminal activities make Rwandan people more emboldened to struggle to remove the dictatorship.

Colonel Patrick Karegeya was a courageous soldier who died on the battlefield. We are determined more than ever before to carry the torch of struggling for freedom, for which he died. We shall win.

We extend our condolences to Mrs. Leah Karegeya and the children, and pray that they find strength in these difficult times.

May the Almighty God grant his soul to rest in peace.
Further details will be communicated later.
On behalf of the opposition Platform RNC, FDU-INKINGI and Amahoro People’s Congress.

Dr. Theogene Rudasingwa
Coordinator
Rwanda National Congress.
ngombwa@gmail.com

January 2, 2014   1 Comment

Rwanda: Sentenced political prisoner Ingabire remains the icon of our political struggle

Political prisoner, Victoire Ingabire will forever embody our democratic struggle

Brussels, 13 December 2013

Dear compatriots, dear friends of Rwanda, all of you who love peace, freedom and democracy,

The verdict has been rendered and it is devastating. Indeed, our party Chair, Ms. Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, has just unjustly been sentenced to 15 years in prison. The verdict of the Supreme Court extended the first judgement of the High Court dated 30 October 2012.

Our first words go to our party Chair, Ms. Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza to whom we express our unwavering support and promise to continue the fight she initiated until the total conquest of our rights and freedoms and the total liberation of the Rwandan people from the yoke of dictatorship under which it has been languishing for nearly two decades.

Our words also go to the family of the political prisoner, which has consented to so many sacrifices in the interests of the Rwandan people and which today is deprived of a mother or a wife.

Finally, our words are addressed to all members of FDU-Inkingi and all democrats from all the folks, to tell them: “do not be discouraged, the fight has just begun”. Nothing can stop the aspiration of a people for freedom and democracy. Wherever dictatorial regimes have tried to prevent the people from accessing its deep-rooted aspiration, they failed. Certainly, it often took men and women of exceptional courage to get them to fold back their plans. Ms. Victoire Ingabire is one of those.

Let us recall that the decision of FDU-Inkingi to do politics in Rwanda was made after reviewing all options to restore the democratic rule in Rwanda in face of a dictatorial regime. The peaceful option we chose seemed to be the best to avoid eternal power shift through bloodshed. We always think that too much blood has already been shed in our country and it was important that the Rwandan regime understood that by such an action, we gave it an offer of peace and reconciliation in order to save the Rwandan people from the sufferings of the past.

We will not go through all the incidents that marred this trial from the High Court to the Supreme Court and were identified by both Human Rights NGOs (AI, HRW, etc.) and diplomatic representations who attended the proceedings (intimidation of the accused and her defense counsel, harassment of the accused by special emissaries, unequal treatment between the prosecution and the defense, the use of non retroactive laws, manufactured evidence, intimidation of defense witnesses, etc.).

We will neither dwell on lynching and attacks orchestrated by the government to which Ms. Victoire Ingabire was subjected upon her arrival in Rwanda, attacks by the highest authorities of the state including the President of the Republic and which showed from the start the intent of the dictatorship to specifically block the road to our party Chair and to FDU-Inkingi in general, in order to prevent them from entering the democratic competition.

Let us also remember, that the persecution of FDU-Inkingi’s Chair, Ms. Victoire Ingabire was accompanied by that of the party’s Interim Secretary General, Mr. Sylvain Sibomana and other members of FDU-Inkingi, including even her staff in order to isolate her, to weaken her and undermine all structures of the party. Currently, other members of FDU-Inkingi have been convicted and/or are awaiting convictions for reasons that are purely political, such as the fact of attending the trial hearings of Ms. Victoire Ingabire. These include Mr. Venant Abayisenga, Mr. Emmanuel Byukusenge, Ms. Leonille Gasengayire, Ms. Jenny Irakoze Flora, Mr. Marcel Nahimana, Mr. Samuel Hitimana, Mr. Christian Tuganemungu, Mr. Norbert Ufitamahoro, Mr. Valens Uwilingiyimana, Mr. Venuste Uwiringiyimana, and other members who have been persecuted in total indifference and trampling of laws yet established by the regime.

The leaders of other opposition parties such Deo Mushayidi, Bernard Ntaganda, Dr. Theoneste Niyitegeka, etc. are also languishing in prison for political reasons.

With the conviction of FDU-Inkingi’s Chair, Ms. Victoire Ingabire, the conviction of its Interim Secretary General, Mr. Sylvain Sibomana, as well as the ongoing trials of other party members, the Rwandan government hopes to prevent them from exercising their constitutional rights and to decapitate our party; thanks to the laws the government has tailored in order to padlock the political arena.

We hereby recognize the leadership of our party Chair and our party Interim Secretary General because their fight, which is just and legitimate, is also ours. Imprisoned or not, Ms. Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza will remain the beacon that will lead us to total democratic victory.

We’ve already said it at the outset that this trial is political. Nevertheless, we wanted to give to the Rwandan justice system a chance to prove whether it is really independent from the political power. Today’s verdict and those that preceded it, definitively prove that we are facing a political conflict that requires a political solution.

This is why we once again solemnly request direct negotiations with the Rwandan government to find appropriate and lasting solutions to problems of democracy, governance, justice, reconciliation, etc. to prevent other mayhem and to enable all components of the Rwandan people to live together in mutual respect and to guarantee the rights and freedoms of everyone.

We condemn such acts that are outrageous for a respectful state and call upon the international community, Rwanda’s donors, friends of Rwanda, the countries of the Great Lakes region in Africa, the United Nations, the European Union and all the people who love peace and democracy to use their influence and request the Rwandan government to release Ms. Victoire Ingabire and all other political prisoners and accept democratic rules by letting all political parties to freely operate in compliance with the Constitution.

To the Rwandan regime, we reiterate once again, our appeal so that it may exercise restraint and regain its senses.

Thank you for your attention.

Dr. Emmanuel Mwiseneza

Commissioner for Information and Communication

December 13, 2013   3 Comments

Kagame Pays Last Respects To Mandela

Rwanda President Paul Kagame has Friday paid his last respects to departed former South African President, Nelson Mandela, at the Union Buildings where his body lies until burial on Sunday.

Chimpreports.com-Uganda News

December 13, 2013   No Comments