The African Editors’ Forum condemns the assassination of Rwandan journalist Rugambage
by Mathatha Tsedu.
The African Editors’ Forum is shocked, dismayed and saddened by the killing in Kigali (Rwanda) one of its members, journalist and activist for freedom of expression Leonard Jean Cherif Rugambage.
On the night of Thursday 24 to Friday, June 25, 2010, around 23 hours, Jean Leonard Rugambage Cherif, was executed by gunmen lurking outside his door when he returned home.
John Leonard was a brilliant investigative journalist, editor of Umuvugizi, a fiercely independent newspaper in Rwanda. The day of his execution, he had just published an article online which placed responsibility for the Rwandan government and the involvement of senior officials in the attempted assassination of a former general of Rwanda, Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa, in South Africa on June 19, 2010.
The African Editors’ Forum protests against repression as instruments to silence journalists and newspapers, whose only crime is to exercise their right to freedom of expression and practice their profession freely.
The African Editors’ Forum calls upon the Rwandan authorities to shed full light on the murder and to expose and severely punish the perpetrators of this cowardly act and their sponsors. TAEF also calls for the inclusion of independent investigators to allay the fears that the government of President Paul Kagame, which has been implicated in the murder, is not accused of white washing the investigation.
Mathatha Tsedu is Chair of The African Editors’ Forum.