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Before yesterdayVIRUNGA POST

Continued anti-Rwanda rhetoric is not helpful

By virungapost

It is becoming routine that every time government leaders in Rwanda and Uganda meet to work out ways to put an end to the strained relations between the two countries, Uganda’s intelligence community goes into overdrive to undermine this good move.

A clear pattern emerges, whereby the CMI which is actively sponsoring Rwanda National Congress (RNC) terrorists in their quest to destabilize Rwanda is determined to work against the goal of the two countries’ leaders to resolve the matter.

When Uganda’s Foreign Minister, Sam Kutesa, flew to Kigali with a message from President Museveni, supposedly to find a way to improve the relations that have been hurt by CMI’s support for Rwandan terrorists, hopes were raised on both sides of the border that perhaps security operatives in Kampala were finally coming to their senses and seriously considering putting an end to the RNC activities in the country.

There was a sigh of relief that Security operatives in Kampala were ending their joint operations with the RNC that has seen dozens of Rwandan nationals detained and tortured in Uganda’s military intelligence safe houses. However, as if on cue, CMI operatives made their move, arresting yet another innocent Rwandan, Emmanuel Cyemayire, even before Mr. Kuteesa left Kigali.

Early this week, Presidents Paul Kagame and Yoweri Museveni met at Entebbe in Uganda, to once again find ways to resolve the tensions between their two countries. As it turns out, CMI is not prepared to take it lying down. A day after the two leaders met, CMI picked up another Rwandan, Claude Iyakaremye and detained him with no formal charges. His whereabouts remain unknown today.

Now, the group has turned to Uganda’s New Vision publication as the platform to stage their propaganda, clearly aimed at undermining the efforts of the two Heads of state to restore good relations between Rwanda and Uganda.

A news story in the New Vision, “Why Museveni Sacked Senior Immigration Officials,” shows how far CMI is prepared to go in its efforts to torpedo the work of the Heads of State to resolve the matter. The story in the New Vision claimed that the purported agents involved in kidnapping alleged Rwandan asylum seekers “possessed” Ugandan passports. Ordinarily, a serious allegation of this magnitude would be backed by evidence. In this case the CMI and its accomplices at the New Vision don’t present any proof. They don’t have any.

But the fact remains that these kidnapping allegations are used to hoodwink the public from the actual truth of the conniving between CMI and RNC. The individuals they claim to disappear suddenly resurface in eastern DRC as recruits of the rag tag terror group, RNC, having been facilitated by CMI.

When, in December last year, over 45 Rwandan National Congress (RNC) recruits were arrested at Kikagati, a border post between Uganda and Tanzania on their way to RNC training camps in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), travelling on documents issued by Uganda’s CMI, no officials were questioned or sacked at the CMI or indeed at the Immigration department.

As a matter of fact, the architects behind this Kikagati group, Dr. Sam Ruvuma and Deo Nyiligira are freely operating in western Uganda working with RNC fugitives to mobilise support.

Motivated by propaganda, the New Vision chooses to ignore documented facts pertaining to existing agreements between Rwanda and Uganda and how they are effected. The Rwandan refugees referred to in the story, were legally repatriated in accordance with existing Memoranda of Understanding between the Uganda Police and Rwanda National Police. And it hasn’t been a one way traffic. Indeed Uganda has benefited more from the Agreement, as records clearly show that the Ugandan side has received way more fugitives, (more than 35), since the Memoranda were signed, than the number of Rwandans sent home.

Therefore, as long as Uganda’s CMI continues to work to frustrate the efforts of the Heads of State, at every turn, finding a sustainable solution to the conflict won’t be easy. By taking its propaganda to the New Vision, the CMI is clearly upping the ante. Indeed the fact that such a smear campaign is being peddled by a Uganda government owned publication raises fundamental questions about the sincerity of the leadership of that country in averting the tensions.

PHOTOS: Give African scientists the chance to compete professionally – Kagame

By virungapost

President Paul Kagame has advocated for the consideration of African technical expertise during the implementation of projects as opposed to always outsourcing them as if often the case.

President Kagame was Monday speaking at the Next Einstein Forum 2018, a global gathering convening over 1500 scientists, businesspersons and policymakers.

The Forum is organised by The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) in collaboration with Robert Bosch Stiftung, a German Foundation.

Kagame said that often, technical expertise from Africa is not considered as governments and private entities outsource suppliers from outside the continent.

Albert Zeufack, the chief economist for Africa at the World Bank.

“Too often, it is just assumed that technical expertise is unavailable in Africa. Governments are as guilty as big companies in this regard. We keep going back to the same external suppliers for solutions, without making every effort to procure the services here. It doesn’t make sense,” The President said.

Kagame called for the use of African specialists to give them a chance to grow and compete professionally.

“Let’s use the resources we have to give these talented African specialists the chance to grow and compete professionally,” he said.

Though doing so might come at an extra cost, the Head of State said that it will only be for the short term.

“There may be some extra costs in the short term. But doing so will not only build our institutions but increase our capacity for international collaboration as well,” he added.

Dr Eng Haruo Takeda cooperation Chief Engineer Hitachi ltd answers a question during a panel discussion at the Next Einstein Forum.

This would undo a scenario whereby for far too long, the continent has been left behind in regards to scientific advancements, he said.

In the quest to catch up with the rest of the world, he said that women and girls should not be left behind.

“As Africa catches up to the rest of the world, we cannot afford to leave our women and girls out of the equation. The gender gap in science is a global phenomenon, but that is no reason to accept it as inevitable. Whatever the causes may be, we have to dedicate ourselves to closing the gap, because the opportunity will never be equal without equal access to knowledge,” he said.

Kagame on Africa catching up with the rest of the world

He called for the development of ecosystems whereby progress in science goes beyond passing knowledge to applying know-how to address African and global problems.

“It is not just about filling heads with information and performing well on exams. The purpose is to apply that knowledge to solve the problems facing our continent and our world. That requires an innovation ecosystem in which government, business, and educational institutions all reinforce each other,” he said.

Education minister Eugene Mutimura.

Further progress can be achieved through creating linkages and partnerships between higher learning institutions, firms and research communities.

“Scientific research is fundamentally about cooperation across borders. Its global character accelerates the process of discovery and multiplies the benefits. We do not aim to create an autonomous African science that operates in isolation. That would defeat the purpose. We are working to fully connect Africa to the global networks that have been so productive,” the President noted.

A participant asks a question during the Next Einstein Forum in Kigali.

Prof. Neil Turok, the founder of The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) said that it was encouraging that at a time when most parts of the world were dividing in the lines of nationalism and protectionism, African countries were coming together to cooperate, making advancements in science among other fields.

Dr. Eugene Mutimura, the Minister for Education, called for increased cooperation among African countries in supporting emerging African scientists.

“We need to forge partnerships as countries to support and encourage the next African scientists as they are the ones that will lead the upward scientific trajectory of African innovation,” he said.

SOURCE: The New Times Publications.

African scientists get backing from the AU

By virungapost

African scientists will be glad to learn that they have the full backing of the continent’s top leadership.

President Paul Kagame, the Africa Union chair, reiterated his support for science-related initiatives and committed to rallying his African counterparts to boost the sector.

He was speaking on a presidential panel at the ongoing Next Einstein Forum 2018, a global gathering that drew over 1500 scientists, businesspersons and policymakers.

The forum is organised by The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) in collaboration with Robert Bosch Stiftung, a German Foundation.

Kagame said that the African Union, through its Commission for Science and Technology, intends to bring together African countries to advance developments in science and technology.

The advancements in science, the President said, can be used to facilitate Africa’s development agenda.

“Already at the AU Commission, there is a commission responsible for science and technology and we intend to strengthen that, support that and make sure it serves the continent by bringing together African countries around something they can do together to advance development on what science and technology can provide,” Kagame said.

He noted that strengthening science-related disciplines would save the continent from lagging behind during the forthcoming fourth industrial revolution as has been the case previously.

“Education, science, mathematics, technology are very central in our daily lives if we want to make advancements that we have set for ourselves in the next 50 years. There have been revolutions across the globe and Africa has always lagged behind or left out,” the President said.

“This moment we should not miss out. There is no doubt that Africa intends to do the best we can. I will do my best, work with other leaders, to make sure that we seize the moment,” he said.

The idea is to encourage countries to invest state resources and put in place policies that boost science that aims at benefiting citizens.

Among the efforts that the Rwandan government has rolled out in recent years to strengthen scientific advancements include ensuring a conducive business environment as well as building partnerships with international higher learning institutions, among other stakeholders.

Government efforts have seen Rwanda host multiple science centres as well as regional headquarters of institutions such as African Institute of Mathematical Sciences, and Carnegie Mellon University.

“We have encouraged ecosystem partnerships with academic institutions and the private sector to make sure young people’s ideas are encouraged and facilitated,” Kagame said.

“We invest in education and do what we can ourselves and with partners to encourage and incentivize science and avail opportunities for young people,” the President added.

Asked what application he would develop if he were a 20-year-old techie, President Kagame said that he is more focused on fostering the next generation of top-notch developers.

“I find myself here, which makes me think that I shouldn’t be the next Zuckerberg, but rather I should be the one to enable others to become Zuckerbergs,” Kagame responded.

Speaking at the session, Senegal President Macky Sall said that the African continent ought to support scientific advancements by developing skills of the youth.

“Africa cannot be absent from the innovation and science scene, it is able to surpass the old powers in this field,” Sall said.

Thierry Zomahoun, the AIMS President and CEO & Next Einstein Forum founder, emphasised that a lot can be achieved in regards to advancements in science if leaders are committed to supporting the sector.

The 2019 Next Einstein Forum will be hosted by President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya.

SOURCE: The New Times Publications

Kagame, Museveni agree to strengthen ties

By virungapost

President Paul Kagame yesterday met his Ugandan counterpart, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, at the State House in Entebbe, Uganda where the two leaders resolved to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.

The President was accompanied onto his one-day official visit to Uganda by, among others, the Foreign Affairs minister Louise Mushikiwabo.

In a meeting that took several hours, the two leaders discussed a number of issues of mutual interest including; railway connections, power supply lines, air transport operations, and security between the two countries and the region.

“I can say with great satisfaction that we were able to agree on a number of important things for the benefit of our countries and region. Better communication, working together more deeply and sharing facts regularly will allow us to take better decisions,” President Kagame said after the meeting.

Kagame added that he also used the meeting to brief President Museveni on the outcomes of the recently concluded African Union summit in Kigali that saw African leaders sign the African Continental Free Trade Area agreement.

“We congratulated and commended Uganda and President Museveni for their participation and their significant contribution in making the summit a success,” Kagame said.

Uganda, which was represented by Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kutesa at the meeting in Kigali last week, was among the countries that endorsed all the three instruments to ease intra-Africa trade; the CFTA, the Kigali Declaration, and the protocol on free movement of persons.

President Museveni described the meeting as fruitful, and underscoring the immense benefits for Uganda having very close ties with Rwanda.

“Thank you for squeezing in time to come here so that we deal with these very important points. We agreed on all points and how to proceed forward and I wish success to the people of Rwanda and the RPF party,” he said.

Security concerns

While responding to questions from journalists on harassment of Rwandans in Uganda, Museveni said that there is no fundamental conflict between Rwanda and Uganda, adding that there has only been lack of coordination and communication between officials of both countries.

“There is no fundamental problem between Rwanda and Uganda. A number of incidents that are being commented about in the media, many would be properly addressed if only there was better communication,” said President Museveni.

On the topic of private sector engagement, Kagame said that there is no reason why the private sector of both countries should remain inactive – especially on reviving trade between the two countries, and called for more cooperation in increasing trade cooperation.

The Rwanda-Uganda Business Forum, which is supposed to an annual gathering, where business and political leaders of both countries meet to discuss issues of mutual concern was last held in Kigali in 2014.

“I think we have ourselves to blame for not pursuing something like that that is useful. I don’t see why there should be any problem at all. The private sector people themselves need to really re-activate whatever was working and we will provide them with the political support required for that to be expedited,” he said.

In a communiqué, both leaders directed their ministers responsible for Foreign Affairs to convene the next Joint Permanent Commission (JPC) within three months to follow up on areas of cooperation.

At the end of their meeting, Kagame extended an invitation to Museveni for a state visit to Rwanda, which was accepted, according to the communique.

SOURCE: The New Times Publications

PHOTOS: A new dawn for Africa as 44 countries sign CFTA deal

By virungapost

The African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (CFTA ) could enter into effect by the end of this year following signing by 44 countries yesterday at the 10th extraordinary African Union Summit.

Besides the agreement, which could make Africa the world’s largest free trade zone, 43 nations signed the Kigali Declaration, while 27 countries agreed to ease mobility of people across the continent by signing the protocol on movement of people across Africa.

A total of nineteen presidents were present at the signing while other nations delegated top government officials such as Prime Ministers, Vice Presidents and Ministers of Foreign Affairs of their respective countries.

President Paul Kagame signs the three historic instruments at the 10th Extraordinary Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the African Union at the Kigali Convention Centre. 

President Paul Kagame said that the milestone is proof of what is possible when the African states work together.

“Today’s milestone is an indication of how much is possible when we work together. Let’s use the momentum we have gained to push forward with the Agenda 2063 flagship projects that we have committed ourselves to in the first Ten-Year Implementation Plan,” he said.

He said that the development was not the end but the starting of a new phase which, if successfully implemented around can turn the continent’s fortunes.

President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger, who spearheaded the CFTA adoption process, was the first leader to sign the agreements in Kigali yesterday. 

Following the signatures, African states will have to ratify the agreement in their respective legislatures to put it into effect.

“The task now is to ratify the African Continental Free Trade Area and the Protocol on the Free Movement of Persons, so that they may come into effect as soon as possible,” he said.

When the agreement takes effect, Kagame said, it would have impact on the wellbeing of Africans as well as improve the quality of ties with the rest of the world.

The agreement envisions a continental market of 1.2 billion people, with a combined Gross Domestic Product of more than $3.4 trillion.

Chad President Idriss Déby Itno signs the instruments at Kigali Convention Centre yesterday.

The agreement will also boost the level of intra-Africa trade from the current 14 per cent to over 52 per cent by 2022

President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger, who has been spearheading the agreement adoption process, said that the deal presents a historic turning point with better days in sight.

“As we launch the African Continental Free Trade Area, our belief is that Africa is stronger when Africans work together; rather than in a divided and isolated way. This is a strategy that we must pursue vigorously,” Issoufou, who was also the first Head of State to sign the agreement, said.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa represented his country at the signing ceremony at Kigali Convention Centre.

He noted that it would also make the continent an ideal international investment destination as well as serve to strengthen political, economic and commercial commitments with various international partners

The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union, Moussa Faki Mahamat, urged African leaders to get on with the consequent steps to its implementation, saying citizens and businesses were eager for a stronger continent.

President Kagame delivers his remarks at the 10th Extraordinary Summit of the African Union Heads of State and Government in Kigali on Wednesday.

“Our peoples, our business community and our youth in particular cannot wait any longer to see the lifting of the barriers that divide our continent, hinder its economic takeoff and perpetuate misery, even though Africa is abundantly endowed with wealth,” Mahamat said.

African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat displays the three instruments that were signed by AU leaders in Kigali on Wednesday. (Courtesy photos)

The African private sector seems eager on the agreement’s implementation and has moved to speed up ratification and implementation.

Speaking on behalf of African Business community, Ali Mufuruki, a Tanzanian billionaire and founder of Infotech Investment Group, said that the private sector is pledging $1 million to raise awareness about the agreement and its importance.

SOURCE: The New Times Publications.

Uganda’s intelligence exposes itself in latest propaganda against Rwanda

By virungapost

The seriousness with which intelligence work is conducted in Uganda seems to have been reduced to cheap rumor mongering, if one is to go by the latest propaganda emanating from Uganda’s military intelligence circles against Rwanda.

Uganda’s CMI has lately turned into a champion of rumour milling—churning out fabricated lies through it proxy blogs trying to smear mud on Rwanda in a desperate attempt to divert attention from their relationship with the terror group, RNC.

A blog that is the mouthpiece of the terror outfit, the so-called Rwanda National Congress (RNC) and their sponsors, the Ugandan Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI), has once again carried a bogus report making outrageous accusations against Rwanda.

As part of these allegations by Soft Power, a propaganda blog is a litany of “high profile assassinations” that are apparently being hatched with connivance of the Uganda Police Force and Rwandan security agencies.

The story cites a source from the Ugandan security that the so-called plot for the assassinations was hatched in Kigali during a meeting between a one Herbert Muhangi from the Ugandan police and senior security officials from Rwanda.

Now, if one is to play the devil’s advocate –for the sake of a debate and just assume that such a meeting ever happened. This allegation would constitute a serious intelligence case that in normal circumstances would be handled as top secret intelligence by security organs of any serious Intelligence leadership.

In other words, intelligence of this magnitude (if it were true) is not solved through blogs but rather competent security institutions. It is therefore stooping too low to manufacture such lies and plant them in proxy blogs because it only exposes the sinister intentions behind.

The truth of the matter is, these are diversionary tactics by CMI and their acolytes to divert attention from their open sponsorship of RNC, the terror outfit that continues to enjoy full protection and backing as they hatch subversive activities against Rwanda on Ugandan soil.

Several Rwandans who were abducted and tortured by CMI working with RNC have previously recounted their ordeals during their period in captivity, clearly detailing how much this outfit is deeply embedded into the highest of the Uganda security, mainly CMI.

This website has credible reports on open recruitment that continues to be done openly on Ugandan territory by these fugitives mainly in refugee camps accommodating Rwandans.

One known RNC operative engaged in recruiting for the outfit is Dr. Sam Ruvuma who, in playing to the gallery was briefly detained by Ugandan security, but was released after few days and is now back on his recruitment drive. His co-accused and their 43 recruits intercepted at Kikagati border heading to Minembwe-DRC training camp are still detained pending trial. His main operational base is in Western Uganda.

Others from Western Uganda include Deo Nyirigira and his son, Felix Mwizerwa and Mugisha Charles Sande. Nyirigira operates a Pentecostal church in Mbarara town –Agape Church which is a cover for recruitment of RNC fugitives.

This is on top of the likes of Mukombozi and Kayumba Rugema both CMI staff, who abduct innocent Rwandans suspected of not belonging or sympathetic to rnc on the street of Uganda, during broad day light and openly brag about it on social media.

Uganda’s CMI should therefore come clean on these shenanigans other than trying to divert attention by dragging Rwanda into internal infightings of the Ugandan security services.

The close ties of Sarah Kagingo, who publishes the propaganda website Soft Power, to Lt. Gen. Henry Tumukunde are well known. It would therefore not be surprising that she is using the blog to disenfranchise the Uganda security hierarchy against Police boss Kale Kayihura.

The bad blood between Kayihura and Tumukunde – the Ugandan Minister for Security – needs no introduction for it has even openly played out in the media. To drag Rwanda into this machination is not only a diversionary act but cheap to say the least.

Lastly, one cannot divorce Soft Power from RNC, given the fact that snippets of the same report they talk about, was first published on social media word-for-word by a known RNC operative on social media before being published by Soft Power.

Therefore, time is up for CMI and its leaders to stop this cheap propaganda and only devote their energy to get rid of RNC that is seemingly directing their operations against Rwanda on Ugandan soil.

Open letter to Norwegian Embassy, Kampala Uganda

By virungapost

Virunga Post reproduces a letter addressed to Norwegian Embassy written by a group of Parents whose sons were arrested in December 2017 as they headed for rebel recruitment. The 43 young men were recruited by Rugema Kayumba of RNC facilitated by CMI of Uganda.

Open letter to Norwegian Embassy, Kampala Uganda

Plot 18B, Akii-Bua Road
P.o.Box 22770
Kampala, Uganda
Email: [email protected]

Dear Ambassador,

Greetings and best wishes for 2018. We write this letter on behalf of our three sons who have become victims of terror recruitment that is sponsored by an individual who claims to be a resident of your great country.

Our sons, whose names we prefer not to mention for their safety, were recruited into a terrorist organization by Rugema Kayumba who had befriended them and was often seen around our home in Western Uganda. We came to learn that he was befriending them so that he could take them to join the Rwanda National Congress (RNC), which has been classified as a terror organization due to their activities in Rwanda.

Rugema frequented our neighborhood telling young men that he was going to get them jobs in Iraq as guards. He promised their parents that once they get training for the Iraq job, it would be easier for them to enter Norway as immigrants. He told them that their security skills would guarantee them jobs in Norway. All of them, including our sons, got excited. We too got excited, especially because he said that he too was a beneficiary of a similar scheme that ultimately made him a resident of Norway.
Being desperate, our children heeded these empty lies. Little did we know that Rugema was instead recruiting them for illegal terror/rebel activities . We only learnt later that the training he was referring to was sending our children into the rank and file of Rwanda National Congress (RNC). It was never about the dream of going to Norway that had excited us.

Now our children are in the hands of Uganda Police which intercepted them at Kikagati border as Rugema was taking them to Minembwe in the Democratic Republic of the Congo where we are told the RNC has a rebel camp.

We are worried, Ambassador. Any parent would be worried. We don’t know what to do. We have only thought of engaging you because Rugema would brag about how easy he can change the lives of our children and ours by taking them to Norway.

We don’t know whether the Norway government actually has this program that recruits young men and eventually gives them residence as Rugema promised our kids because we hear he has moved to neighboring towns promising young men the same.

The lives of many young people are at risk and many families will blame the Norwegian government for whatever happens to their children because Norway is being used as the bait to lure young men into terrorism. If this continues some families here will start thinking that the Norwegian government supports terrorism.

For now, please help us get Kayumba Rugema to explain to Uganda Police where he was taking our children so that the police releases them to us.

Sincerely,

Concerned Parents

Arinaitwe, CMI-SoftPower’s correspondent from Butabika

By virungapost

The Uganda based propaganda website SoftPower this week published a story about an intelligence agent who fled the country fearing for his life.

After fleeing the country Furaha Arinaitwe wrote a letter to president Museveni in which he claimed that he was on the run because Rwandan agents wanted to kill him. Arinaitwe, an intelligence officer attached to CMI, was apparently approached in 2009 to carryout operations on behalf of Rwanda and has been on its payroll ever since that time.

At some point, the Rwandans (apparently president Kagame himself) assigned him to kill President Museveni. Arinaitwe refused this task out of patriotism or what he calls his allegiance to his country’s motto. And this refusals is the reason he is now on the run because he no longer feels safe in Uganda.

The letter is as sensational as can be and only a propaganda or tabloid paper could have published it. It’s no wonder that none of the respected papers in Kampala broke the “scandal.” Instead, they left it upon SoftPower to descend into the gutter and comedy where it holds unrivalled experience within Uganda’s media.

Just a few lines of the SoftPower story and Arinaitwe’s letter points to a perfect paring, if one is to go by the absurdity that veers on derangement.

First of all, the sensationalism in Arinaitwe’s letter shows that it is addressed to the media despite his claim that its intended recipient was the President. If indeed Museveni was the intended audience, then the content betrays Arinaitwe’s claim to being anintelligence “expert.”

Arinaitwe makes a number of ridiculous claims that anyone with basic sense even outside the field of intelligence would find farfetched and difficult to believe. Imagine his claim that President Kagame personally called him and offered him $100.000 to kill President Museveni.

Arinaitwe now claims to be on the run because he refused to execute this assignment. Most importantly, Arinaitwe claims in the letter that he tipped off Museveni about this plot to assassinate him.

Yet, this is the same man who has failed to get an audience with Museveni and resorted to writing him a letter from wherever he is now seeking refuge.

Imagine it were true that Arinaitwe gave Museveni this tipoff. Imagine also that Museveni did the due diligence and indeed found that Arinaitwe was right Kigalli had given him the assassination task.

Furaha Arinaitwe.

Would it be likely that Museveni would deny audience to Arinaitwe in the future? What if he was in possession of more life-saving information to pass on to Museveni and here he was refusing him audience?

What this tells us about Arinaitwe is that he is a deranged man who gave Museveni wrong intel in order to win his favour. It also tells us that this is a justification for Softpower and its sponsors (CMI) to justify what they started and have been involved in all this time.

All this can be found in Arinaitwe’s letter. He talks about spying for Rwanda and then claim that the only reason he refused to kill Museveni is because his loyalty to the Motto of serving the country. Yet, the country he refers to is the same country he claims to have spied against for almost ten years.

Only a mad man can claim loyalty and patriotism in such circumstances. Also, only a paper suffocating on propaganda would publish such display of utter madness.

Further down it reads like bad fiction. Arinaitwe makes the preposterous claim that when he refused to assassinate Museveni the mission was given to Kale Kayihura, who accepted it.

It gets more twisted. A plot is thrown in for good measure about how a ‘desperate’ Rwandan leadership was on the line with Arinaitwe trying to get Kale Kayihura’s phone number. What an expert this Arinaitwe is. Yet, we are supposed to believe that this is the man who would be identified as suitable for a task as serious as carrying out an assassination of a president.

The only people all this seems to make perfect sense for are our friends at SoftPower Inc. Of course and Arinaitwe at his hideout in Butabika.

However, here are a few facts we know about the infamous Issa Furaha Arinaitwe;

1.     SGT Issa Arinaitwe  is a CMI staff who has been operating in Kampala. He is a known conman in Kampala who has been working with organised criminal syndicates involved in fake deals of gold and ivory.

2.     The most known cases where he was involved include the case of ivory in 2015, where the incident involved a Chinese national Mr Yuu.

3.     The most recent case include the case of a fake gold deal where Issa facilitated a businessman Suleiman Mbuga in defrauding a 70 year old Swedish politician Sten Heinson about 23 billion Ugandan (Shillings.  http://matookerepublic.com/2018/01/03/mbugas-wife-accused-of-conning-shs23-billion-from-elderly-swedish-man/)

Viola! That’s your Conman Issa Furaha Arinaitwe, a typical pot-bellied conman masquerading as intelligence operative!

Uganda intelligence actions riding on RNC fake reports

By virungapost

Uganda’s intelligence actions towards Rwanda are increasingly not grounded on facts but rather fabricated lies from fugitives of Rwanda National Congress (RNC) operating in Kampala, observers say.

Recently, Uganda seems to have turned into a safe haven and command centre for RNC renegades keen to benefit from rift between Kigali and Kampala by giving them ground for rebel recruitment on the Ugandan soil.

Indeed reports have already confirmed direct support from Uganda’s top security organs, specifically the Chieftaincy for Military Intelligence (CMI) to RNC in designing anti-Rwanda propaganda and shaping intelligence narrative to create undue tensions between the two countries.

Now RNC propaganda seems to be influencing Uganda’s decisions on free movement of people especially by arresting innocent Rwandans and planting anti-Rwandan stories in the media, according to information from Uganda’s security circles.

“It is increasingly becoming pathetic that we, here in Uganda have tolerated this nonsense to continue because it risks to influence both our diplomatic and security ties with Rwanda,” a top security official told the Standard newspaper from Kampala.

“These RNC operatives have gotten into the ears of some intelligence fellows here with whom they share old historical ties. Since some of them have historical grudges to settle, they are abusing the powers of their offices to serve individual interests,” the seemingly irritated official told this website.

Media reports have pointed out the inner-dealings between CMI and RNC focal points in Kampala led by Rugema Kayumba. Rugema runs anti-Rwanda propaganda freely on different social media platforms attacking the leadership of Kigali without any caution from his hosts in Kampala.

Sensing that the malicious allegations of Rwanda ‘kidnapping’ refugees are not working in their favour, RNC and its sponsors (CMI) have now turned to planting fake stories that Kigali is sponsoring assassins to target the top leadership in Uganda.

“These fellows are taking the joke to another level,” the security source said. “They have actually hijacked CMI and running the show with what pleases them.” The terror group, RNC has been mobilizing recruits in different refugee camps accommodating Rwandans inside Uganda.

In December last year, a group of 45 Rwandan refugees were arrested from Uganda’s Kikagati border post with fake travel documents as they headed for rebel recruitment to Burundi and onwards to Eastern DRC. They are now detained in Uganda.

However, one of key mobiliser of this group from Mbarara District, one Dr. Sam Ruvuma was arrested but later released after intervention from higher authorities in Uganda.

Sources say the release of Ruvuma has created animosity among the detained group who see it as betrayal since Ruvuma was the fellow that mobilized them into the illegal activities.

“It is quite revealing that Dr. Ruvuma who was a mastermind of RNC recruitment in Uganda was set free,” a source quoted one of the detained fellows saying. “He is the fellow who led us into this mess and should be here with us.”

At the time of Ruvuma’s arrest, information obtained by an investigative website showed he was working with some of the detained recruits especially Moses Bijura of Rubare, Ntugamo and Godfrey Musoni from Mukono. Both are now questioning why Ruvuma is free.

Dr. Ruvuma is part of the ring mobilizing for RNC in western Uganda working hand-in-hand with Pastor Deo Nyirigira of Agape Pentecostal church based in Mbarara.

The court case for these detained 45 is yet to kick off. This week, Uganda’s media reported that the case had been postponed due to lack of financial resources.

However, what is strange is that the case file only mentions of terrorism charges and leaves out RNC rebel recruitment with intention of destabilizing a neighbor.?

Source: www.standardmedia.co.ke

Tribert Rujugiro: Africa’s ‘kingpin of fraud and smuggling’

By virungapost

Tribert Rujugiro Ayabatwa is a controversial name that evokes both success and fraud in equal measure.

If the measure of success is how fat one’s wallet is, then Rujugiro certainly features. However if success is the aggregate sum of an individual’s character, then the aging tycoon scores a flat F. One great writer put it well —that success without honor or character is like an unseasoned dish. It will satisfy your hunger but won’t taste good.

Similarly, another great novelist said it better—“be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character–be careful of your character for your character becomes your destiny.”

No better way of describing the 76-year-old Rujugiro than the above statement. Rujugiro’s habits read fraud from A to Z. These unscrupulous habits have shaped the character of man who thinks money can buy him anything.

His story would pass for a typical Mexican drug cartel –only this time operating from Africa. His mafia-like lifestyle has seen him amass wealth through undercover methods. He is the kingpin of tax evasion, money laundering, smuggling and eliminating any opponent who stands his way in his hunt for an extra dollar.

Rujugiro was born in Rwanda around 1941. Like many Rwandans, he spent most of his adult life as a refugee in Burundi. It is from Bujumbura that Rujugiro cut his teeth in the business world of cigarette smuggling. Before venturing in the shady world of cigarette smuggling; Rujugiro contributed to the bankruptcy of an insurance company he worked for as a clerk through an elaborate scheme of fake vehicle accidents.

It didn’t take long until he became a household name as a front man for the business interests of key military and political figures in the Jean Baptiste Bagaza regime in the 1970s and 80s. In turn they would protect his business via monopoly. The impunity that Rujugiro enjoyed as a result of these relationships led him to wide scale smuggling, money laundering and tax evasion, something he has specialized in till today.

Rujugiro excels at smelling prey. It is a business model that has followed the same pattern since his Bujumbura days. It views accountability deficits as an opportunity for investment, identifying a country for investment whose systems of accountability are non-existent or are decaying.

Alternatively, where there are strong systems of accountability, he seeks out powerful (already corrupt or potentially corruptible) individuals within those systems and integrates them into his business by offering them some equity. In exchange, they help him to evade accountability and gain impunity. This is how Rujugiro has managed to hold different governments at ransom everywhere he has been.

And this is the point of departure with Rwanda or the beef with Kigali. Those who know the system in Rwanda know that it cannot accept to be held at ransom by anyone. Moreover, the political and military elite in Rwanda is cohesive and under control, which made it impossible for Rujugiro’s business model to thrive.

When he was arrested in London following an arrest warrant issued by the South African prosecution office over tax evasion, Rujugiro, in his shallow thinking thought Rwanda would immediately sever diplomatic ties with London for “daring” to lock up Mr. money–bags.

The arrogance of thinking that individual crimes must be a state responsibility, largely informed by his past dealings with rogue states is what led Rujugiro to turn against his motherland. It was a case of a childish argument “you didn’t fight my war, let me fight you now” —which largely explains the megalomaniac character of this fellow.

To embark on his ill-advised revenge scheme, he linked up with disgruntled RDF deserters and fugitives like Kayumba Nyamwasa and the late Patrick Karegeya to form the terror group, Rwanda National Congress (RNC).

In an ill-advised classical case of “money can you buy you everything,” Rujugiro has reached out to his wallet to fund the “revenge” scheme. He has paid lobbyists to tarnish Rwandan image, issued free shares in his companies to buy loyalty from well-established individuals in the region and cashed PR agencies to write and find space for derogatory stories on the leadership in Kigali.

For example, in September last year, Rujugiro paid $440,000 to the Washington Based Podesta Inc., a lobbying firm to buy access to U.S. Congress where his main stooge, David Himbara would testify against Kigali with the aim of throwing mud at Kigali.

After the September hearing in the American Congress, the group also tried to secure a similar hearing in the Canadian parliament but failed after Rwandans in that country mobilized against them.

Parallel to this, Rujugiro has been active in the region. In Bujumbura, he showered the leadership with free gifts of shares in his tobacco and cement business in exchange for a safe haven for his anti-Rwanda activities. He bankrolled Burundi’s ruling party during the controversial elections held two years ago with a cash donation to finance the elections and forty(40) brand new pick-ups for use in the campaigns.

In Kampala, most Ugandans learned about the name Tribert Rujugiro for the first time when a local tabloid revealed that Rujugiro had signed a business venture with President Museveni’s young brother Gen. Saleh Akandwanaho worth millions of dollars. In the agreement Gen. Saleh is given shares in Rujugiro’s Tobacco Company (15%) and in exchange, Saleh agrees to protect Rujugiro’s assets in Uganda and in the region.

It is said, when Rujugiro is in Kampala, he is protected more than the Generals of that country. His sons also enjoy similar security protection. This explains the very reason Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI) has become the focal point for RNC recruitment inside Uganda.

“New Gold”

In South Africa, a recent book by investigative journalist Jacques Pauw titled “The President’s Keepers: Those Keeping Zuma in power and Out of Prison” sheds light to Rujugiro’s exploits.

Pauw names Rujugiro among a ring of “assassins, arms dealers, and gangsters” who have turned South Africa into one of the “top five countries in the world with the highest incidence of trade in illicit cigarettes,” he reveals that the smuggling is “referred to as ‘the new gold,’ something that places emphasis on the lucrative nature of the trade in which, Pauw underscores, “Profit margins approach 1,000 % in an industry that has grown into one of the largest organized criminal enterprises.”

The consequences of the smuggling are vast. According to the book, “Tobacco smuggling doesn’t just deprive the state of taxes and duties, but it often masks other crimes, including money laundering, fraud, drug smuggling and human trafficking,” Pauw writes: “The smuggling of tobacco costs government 3bn rand because of tax evasion, money laundering and corruption.”

In a crackdown against smuggling in ‘black gold’ that was giving a bad reputation to South Africa, Rujugiro found himself detained in the UK on a warrant of arrest by the South African Prosecution Services. In 2007 South African Revenue Services (SARS) halted all operations at Rujugiro’s Mastermind tobacco company, in Wilsonia following a $7.4 million fraud case. He faced 25 counts of fraud relating to non-payment of excise duties, 25 charges of illegally exporting goods from the Customs and Excise warehouse, six charges relating to the non-payment of Value Added Tax, and a charge of irregular dealing in goods

In Nigeria, Rujugiro defaulted on the terms of a concession granted by the local authorities under which his company (Leaf Tobacco Company) was to enjoy a 60 per cent waiver in the importation of cigarettes, tools and inputs against the promise to start production locally in three years. Six years down the line, Rujugiro’s company was yet to start manufacturing cigarettes locally but was still handsomely benefiting from the generous terms of the concession.

That is that character of the man behind anti-Rwanda propaganda today. A man drank on ill-gotten wealth and one who thinks he can use his money to evoke regime change. Good enough, such times have changed for Rwanda and changed

Good enough, such times have changed for Rwanda and changed for good and forever.

Source: http://www.sde.co.ke

RNC’s Rugema now brags openly of being part of CMI

By virungapost

Maverick RNC coordinator in Uganda’s Capital Kampala, Rugema Kayumba has let the cat-out-of-the-bag by publically admitting he’s a proud associate of Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI)

Though the confirmation of his relations with CMI is not necessarily big news, the surprising part is that a national security organ (CMI) can accept a fugitive of a neighboring state to openly confess about their illegal dealings in trying to mount a rebellion.

His work with CMI was largely brought to limelight by Rwandans previously kidnapped in Uganda, who continue to give chilling accounts of how Rugema operates freely framing cases against innocent Rwandans and overseeing the illegal kidnaps.

On his facebook post late Thursday, Rugema who was parroting the same tired propaganda on alleged refugee killings, confirmed that to promote his campaign he “will continue” to work with CMI.

In the post he said “–I will not only work with CMI but will be part of them.”

Their campaign is to fake refugee harassment alleged committed by Kigali as a cover up for their clandestine recruitment drive of young Rwandan youth into RNC rebel ranks.

The propaganda is also a desperate attempt to keep Rwandan refugees as hostages especially after December 31,2017 UN cessation clause ending refugee status for Rwandans.

Though witness accounts have previously confirmed the link between Rugema and CMI, it is surprising that he now openly brags on social media about his ties with a legitimate national security institution.

It is said Rugema carries riffles in his car and occasionally has military escorts attached to CMI.

Rugema, a Corporal who deserted from RDF is married to a Muhima lady called Peace Rugema, a trader in Kampala.  He works closely with one, Corporal AbdulKarim Mulindwa a.k.a Mukombozi a CMI operative (RA 189654) who reports directly to Chief of CMI.

What is behind Softpower anti-Rwanda Propaganda?

By virungapost

Softpower.com, a Ugandan based online publication has transitioned itself into the new channel for anti-Rwanda propaganda and a mouthpiece for covering-up the ‘love affair’ between CMI and RNC.

The online publication is now key medium for deceit and diversionary of facts surrounding the open and well-documented close collaboration between the terrorist rebel outfit, RNC and Uganda’s security organs specifically, Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI).

For example, when Uganda Police arrested the group of 43 young Rwandan RNC recruits, Softpower was the messenger spinning the story to portray the recruits as “innocent Missionaries” headed for evangelical work in Burundi.  It deliberately did not question why the young Rwandan men were carrying false Uganda travel documents.

But probably before we dwell into the link betweensoftpower.com and its new assignment of churning out anti-Rwanda propaganda, we need to remind of our audience of the following facts that are backed with evidence.

It is a fact that RNC agents operate freely in Uganda  and that some of these fellows are armed with escorts and carry out their treacherous activities against Rwanda under the full cover of CMI.

It is a fact that 43 young Rwandan refugees were mobilized from different refugee camps inside Uganda by both CMI and RNC to join rebel ranks. Fortunately, the group was arrested at Kikagati border by Uganda Police enroute for rebel training in DRC via Burundi. As we speak CMI is mounting pressure on different judicial organs in Uganda to have them released for fear of incriminating evidence that will be produced in the courts of law once they appear.

It is a fact that CMI together with RNC have designed an anti-Rwanda campaign propaganda—one that seeks to portray Kigali as government bent on tormenting its refugees and hence indirectly justify the undercover recruitment for RNC taking into refugee camps.

Gen. Henry Tumukunde together with Sarah Kagingo of Softpower.

Linked to the above strategy, is a move to baptize any innocent Rwandan not interested in RNC terror agenda as a “Rwandan spy” or a “hit-man,” so that many more are intimidated but also justify the illegal kidnap of innocent Rwandans that have nothing to do with Kigali.

This is precisely why RNC agents like Rugema Kayumba have no other song to sing other than parroting this CMI sponsored false narrative on refugees.

And this is where Softpower.com comes in.  This platform has been chorusing the same false narrative on refugees —to the extent that one would think the editing work has been left to RNC agents.  The conspiracy is evident and could be traced to the link behind the owner of Sofpower.com and some security personnel that evidently have a soft spot for RNC.

The owner, Sarah Kagingo is a former press aid to President Museveni. Eversince she left State House, she has been working directly with President Museveni young brother Gen. Saleh and Uganda’s Security Minister Henry Tumukunde

The photos you see below demonstrate the closeness between Ms. Kagingo and Gen. Tumukunde.

Not surprising, this website has been up in arms denying the business interests between Gen. Saleh and RNC’s chief financier, Rujugiro Ayabatwa which was exposed in a legitimate document of shareholders’ agreement that can easily be accessed from Uganda’s Registry of Companies.

Not surprising too, this partly explains why the online publication has been at the forefront of hitting Uganda Police given the publically known sharp differences between Uganda’s Police Chief and Gen. Tumukunde.

So, for Softpower.com, its more about the highest bidder than real facts.

Uganda’s CMI tortures, dumps more Rwandans at Gatuna border

By virungapost

Five of the seven Rwandans who were recently kidnapped by Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI) were yesterday dumped at the Gatuna border after two weeks of torture while incommunicado in CMI cells.

Hubert Munyangaju Umugwaneza, Fred Turatsinze, Vanessa Gasaro, Jessica Muhongerwa and Dinah Kamikazi (all businessmen and women) were separately picked up from their business premises in Uganda at gunpoint.

The victims narrated the abuse to members of the media who attended the press conference in Kigali immediately after they were picked up from the Gatuna border post.

“On the night of December 16, I was at my aunt’s pub that I manage in Mbarara,” Ms. Muhongerwa, 29 , recalled the horror. “A man and a woman came in and started pushing tables around. This seemingly provocative act drew my attention. I moved closer to ask what was going on and immediately another uniformed soldier also entered. They put me at gunpoint, confiscated my phone and pushed me in their car along with another employee. They immediately used our jackets to blindfold us in a very ruthless and painful manner.”

The captors drove around Mbarara picking up people and piling them in the car. They were taken to different cells and kept there. “They started to question me on the fourth day,” she told the press.
“No single day did I see the sun, I was blindfolded all throughout until this (yesterday) morning.”

Hubert Munyangaju Umugwaneza speaks to the media upon arrival in Kigali.

They repeatedly asked her if she knows or is related to anyone in the Rwandan army and whether she communicate with them. She said she did know anyone in the army, at least not anyone she is in touch with. But they insisted that she was not telling the truth, “they would assault me and threaten more violence if I didn’t admit to knowing the soldiers,” she remembers, a situation that she described as intense.

Dinah “Aunt” Kamikazi was questioned about knowing Rwandan government officials. She was stripped naked and psychologically tortured with electrocution. She told this to members of the press:
“One of the nights, I was moved to a room that was filled with water on the floor; they stripped me naked and make me sit down. I was told to confess that I have connection with officials in Rwanda and that if I don’t, they were to place a live electric wire in the water and electrocute me to death. I begged for my life and told them the truth that I don’t have any connections with officials in Rwanda, luckily they did take my life but they were on the verge of doing so.”

Umugwaneza was picked up in Kampala by eight armed men in civilian clothes who placed him on gun point and threatened to shoot him should he sound the alarm.
“They rounded me up and forced me into a waiting car. They removed my shirt and used it to blindfold me and I remained blindfolded the whole night,” Umugwaneza said.

Umugwaneza was held in a dark, underground, cell at CMI headquarters at Mbuya Military Barracks. He was severely assaulted by officers who kept demanding that he confesses to having been “involved” but without telling him what exactly they wanted him to admit to have been involved in.

“At one point the pain was so unbearable that I decided to buy some time by speaking French,” he told the journalists present. “That’s the moment they hit me with something very heavy on my chest and I fell down.”

Deportees speak to the media.

It was not until later on that day they told him what his being “involved” was about. It was about Joel Mutabazi, “I totally had no clue about it. I kept telling them this but they were never prepared to believed me. So they continued to torture me. All this went on while I was blindfolded,” he told a press corps.

Turatsinze was arrested from his Dairy business in Mbarara and also detained at Mbuya Military Barracks. While there he found another Businessman of Rwandan origin called Johnson Nunu, who was recently kidnapped from Ntungamo also by CMI.

After the blindfolds were removed at night when they were using the toilet. Nuunu had introduced himself to Turatsinze and told him that he also didn’t know why he had been detained. “When the guards heard us speaking, they immediately separated us and moved us to different cells,” said Turatsinze.

All of them were questioned about being Rwandan soldiers, knowing them, or being spy agents and were tortured until they would confess. Also all of them were held incommunicado, denied family and consular visits, as well as access to legal services until the wee hours of December 29 (after 2 weeks of detention) when CMI moved them to Kireka police station where they were told that police would release them on bond.

The following day they were loaded into a vehicle heading to Gatuna where they were dumped for collection.

Just recently another Rwandan, Fidele Gatsinzi, was brutally tortured and dumped at the border. These five Rwandans who are back have also suffered the same fate. Now they must start afresh because they have had to abandon their property including businesses in Uganda and are now pleading with the Rwandan government to intervene on their behalf.

In the meantime more remain languishing incommunicado and torture at the hands of CMI whose aim is to cover-up Uganda’s active involvement in recruiting Rwanda National Congress (RNC) recruits to destabilize Rwanda.

“Everyone must confess”: Inside CMI and RNC torture chambers

By virungapost

Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Militarily Intelligence (CMI) recently succumbed to pressure regarding Fidel Gatsinzi, an innocent Rwandan who it has been holding illegally, and dumped him on the Gatuna border post.

Gatsinzi had been subjected to all sorts of torture and appeared crippled. He had spend weeks in brutal conditions but survived to narrate his escape from the jaws of death.

He recalled how he was picked up by Rwanda National Congress (RNC) operatives in the compounds of Capital Shoppers shopping mall that is frequented by hundreds of people and is located adjacent to a police station and a car washing bay. The operatives who included one Mukombozi took him to Rugema Kayumba, the cordinator of RNC operations in Uganda)l, who was seated in his wife’s car, a grey Toyota Harrier, at a close distance. Gatsinzi was bundled into the car and immediately Rugema confiscated his phone, drove him to Kireka at one of CMI’s torture cells.

Inhumane treatment:

He was questioned by RNC and CMI agents. After hours of questioning they blindfolded him and drove him to Mbuya military barracks. At Mbuya he found others under gross abuse that he immediately sensed what they were about to do to him.

“I was undressed and chained on the stairway. Next to me was some old man who was also handcuffed on the bar by the stairway. He was in poor health to the extent that at first I thought he was dead.”

Gatsinzi came to know exactly what they had done to that man because the same fate befell him that night, “I was tortured the whole night. The pain was unbearable By morning my whole body was swollen. I was in deep pain and in the same condition as the man who was next to me,” Gatsinzi said.

Gatsinzi asked for painkillers. They laughed at him and launched insults at him, “ I never dared again to ask for painkillers or even to think about them.”

The torture intensified. They brought his phone and started to ask him about the people in his contacts list. “They would read a name from the phone and ask me how I know the person. They would shout the name as they kicked and beat me.”

They would do this till he was swollen all over and they couldn’t find a fresh part of the body to beat. They would take a short break and change tactics.

After exhausting physical torture they would turn to psychological torture.

Some of the psychological torture involved preparing him for death. They would drag his beat-up body out of the cell and take him to a secret location in the middle of the night. “One night they held a knife on my throat. Another night they did something similar.”

“Everyone must confess”:

He thought things could not get any worse but they did. This was after he was moved to Mbarara in another CMI torture chamber:

“It’s literally a slaughter house. No one gets out alive. And if they do so, they can never be the same. Inside Mbarara cells, if a prisoner doesn’t drop to the ground fast enough, a guard kicks him or stomps on his back. There’s a high-pitched scream from prisoners who are crying helplessly in pain night and day. They are bleeding, with broken bones.” Gatsinzi recalls the horror.

“Men crawl across the floor of the cellblock moving from one place to another looking for hideouts which are not there; they cry for help while the guards stand over them shouting, kicking them,” narrates Gatsinzi.

They are forced to confess everything even things they know nothing about just so that the beating stops even for a short while. “What they want is a confession that they must get out of you at any cost. Every single person there confessed just to stop the pain.”

This is the barbarism that Gatsinzi somehow managed to survive. But this was an innocent man who was in Kampala to visit his son at school. Even worse, the inhumane conditions of torture are carried out by operatives of a government entity (CMI) working with another without any form of accountability (RNC). To imagine that it can happen to any Rwandan in Uganda makes it really terrifying.

It’s a packed festive season, take your pick!

By virungapost

L-R: Butera Knowless and Cecile Kayirebwa.

As the festive season closes in, it is increasingly becoming clear that Kigali’s entertainment scene is growing bigger and better by the day as a number of social events have been lined up to help Rwandans to end 2017 and begin the new year in style.

By far, this festive season has the biggest number of events compared to previous years.

Different hangout places around Kigali have organised New Year countdown parties, while several music concerts are scheduled.

The New Times has picked out a number of event, which you should consider adding to your calendar if you want to enjoy the festive season. Below are some, take your pick.

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Rwanda Konnect Gala

When: December 22.

Where: PSF Gikondo Expo Ground

Artistes: Legends Cecile Kayirebwa, Kidum and Inganzo Ngari Troupe

Entrance fee: Rwf10, 000, Rwf20, 000 (VIP) and Rwf200, 000 (a table for 8).

This is one event you don’t want to miss. It is not very often that you have two legends gracing one stage at the same time. Both Kayirebwa and Kidum are adored in equal measure and to complete the night, celebrated traditional dance troupe Inganzo Ngari will be part of the event.

According to Jacques Kagabo, the organiser, the quality of music will be top notch. Be there.

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Holiday Cheer show

When: December 23

Where: Kigali Convention Centre

Artistes: Knowless Butera and Bruce Melodie

Entrance fee: Rwf200,000 (table of 8 with drinks), Rwf15,000 (VIP), and Rwf10,000 (regular).

This event, organised by Kina Music and different sponsors, will bring together two of Rwanda’s finest musicians Bruce Melodie and Knowless Butera in a concert that will surely set the Christmas mood for those in the house.

Clement Ishimwe, the chief executive of Kina Music, says the evening will be characterised by quality music and a classy setting.

Bruno Mpundu “Yesu uri Uwera” album launch

When: December 25

Where: New Life Bible Church, Kicukiro

Entrance fee: VIP Rwf5,000 (comes with a CD) and Regular Rwf2,000 Artistes: Bruno Mpundu, a member of Alarm Ministries, will launch his solo album Yesu Uri Uwera and it will feature Pastor Faustin Munishi from Kenya, Alarm Ministries, True Promises, Bosco Nshuti and Ben & Chance among others. Surely a Christmas date for gospel music lovers!

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Riderman’s Uburyohe concert, ‘Filime’ Mixtape launch

When: December 25 (Xmas)

Where: Petit Stade, Remera

Entrance fee: Rwf2,000 regular, Rwf5,000 VIP

Artistes: Rapper Emery Gatsinzi, a.k.a Riderman, will unveil his latest album in a concert dubbed Uburyohe on Christmas day as well as his mixtape ‘Filime’. Present to support him will be King James, Active, Queen Cha, Jay C, Fireman, Marina, Khalifan and many others.

Diplomatic Private Party

When: December 30

Where: Kigali Convention Centre (KCC)

Objective: Entertainment that promotes Made-in-Rwanda products.

Artistes: Arthur Nkusi and Hope Irakoze. Comedian and Radio presenter Arthur Nkusi will join forces with the former Tusker Project Fame winner to entertain former street vendors and unemployed people who have since become entrepreneurs.

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New Year Countdown Concert

When: December 31

Where: Kigali Convention Centre

Entrance fee: Regular Rwf30,000, VIP Rwf50,000

Artistes: Nigerian Afro-pop songbird Yemi Alade and Kenyan Afro-pop band Sauti Sol will headline the New Year Countdown Concert on December 31. Also, Impala Orchestra will be on hand to deliver mesmerising oldies. Those in attendance will be able to usher in the New Year with the ‘Africa’ singers and enjoy a spectacle of fireworks lighting up the Kigali skies.

New Year’s East African Party

When: January 1.

Where: Amahoro National Stadium Parking Lot

Entrance fee: Regular Rwf5,000, VIP Rwf10,000

Artistes: Ali Kiba, Sheebah, Yvan Buravan, Bruce Melodie, Riderman & Tough Gang crew. Tanzanian star Ali Kiba will be joined by dancehall queen Sheebah and Rwanda’s finest artistes in the 10th edition of The East African Party organised by East African Promoters (EAP).

SOURCE: The New Times  –  Rwanda

Opinion: Uganda’s Propaganda aims at Rwanda but shoots blanks

By virungapost

Kigali City

On Monday 4 December the website, Soft Power, owned by a lady close to Uganda’s First office published a story titled “Investigation: Rwanda propaganda against Uganda diversionary from police aided illegal repatriation.” Ironically, though the story denounced what it described as “Rwanda’s propaganda,” its content was a mouthful of manufactured lies intended to divert readers from the real truth.

On the whole, the writer went into great pains to show that Uganda is the innocent neighbor that is provoked by an “ungrateful” neighbour, Rwanda. Interestingly, the bitterness that goes as far as reminding Rwanda of the good things Uganda has done for it betrays this cause and, instead, reveals Kampala’s animus state of mind vis-à-vis its neighbour. The central theme of the writer of this intelligence backed propaganda is that Rwanda is running a “secret network within the Uganda Police Force to allegedly repatriate Rwandan fugitives” at the orders of the chief of Uganda Police, IGP Kale Kayihura. It was a piece meant to suck Rwanda into the machinations and intrigues currently running within Uganda’s security organs. But if the writer had done a little homework, he or she would have quickly dispelled the myth of the existence of a secret network. What exists is part of Police diplomacy practiced then world over: bilateral institutional relations. Specifically, the Rwanda-Uganda police relationship is specified in the agreement called, “Combating Terrorism, Drug-Trafficking, Cross Border, Organized and Translational Crimes.” This is the instrument that has been used to repatriate dozens of lawbreakers between the two countries including the much-hyped cases of Joel Mutabazi, on the Rwandan side and Namuyimbwa Shanita aka “Bad Black” on the Ugandan side. There are another 36 people who have been repatriated in a similar manner as Mutabazi and Bad Black. Among these Uganda has asked for and received 26 fugitives compared to 10 that have been repatriated to Rwanda. Moreover, thanks to this framework, a good number of Ugandan and Rwandan girls have been intercepted from traffickers mostly enroute to Asia. Therefore the relation between Uganda and Rwanda Police is purely institutional under a framework that serves interests of the people of both countries. Its not a bedroom agreement between two individuals, as the propaganda article wants to portray it. It gets even more preposterous as the so-called “investigation” turns to Ismael Baguma, a Rwanda’s police attaché to Uganda, who, according to the infamous article, “acts as the conduit” in the kidnappings and is “always in Gen Kayihura’s office.”

Consider this quote from the article: “We have more terrorist threats in Somalia and Kenya than Rwanda but those countries don’t have police attaches deployed in their embassies in Uganda. Why does Rwanda deploy a police attaché to Uganda? What terror threat does Uganda pose to Rwanda to warrant the deployment of Ismael Baguma apart from kidnap of refugees?” Here the authors expose their naivety by deliberately sidestepping facts for the purpose of serving the ultimate intention of driving a negative agenda. When the writer limits matters of law enforcement to “terrorism” the reader is left to wonder about his or her grasp of security matters. A quick google search would have revealed that Uganda has a police attache in Kigali by the names of Assistant Commissioner of Police, Patrick Lawot and that he is more senior in rank than Ismael Baguma who is a Chief Superintendent. Even more, the google search would have led the writer to pictures of Mr. Lawot receiving some items intercepted by the Rwanda Police including moto vehicles (cars and motocycles), laptops, phones, cash in the hundreds of millions, even stolen cows from across the border! – all part of the cooperation framework that the “investigation” missed. But more still, it is standard practice that bilateral arrangements are reciprocated. For instance, Uganda has police attaches deployed in South Sudan (CP Sakiira Moses), Algeria (ACP Baroza), Tanzania, and the DRC (Habyara Fortunate, the former head of PSU). Similarly, police liason officers from Burundi, Italy and other countries are deployed in Kampala. It is, therefore evident, that much as the propaganda in the infamous article was aimed at attacking the name of Kayihura, it was also aimed at undermining and throwing mud at an important existing arrangement that has helped to reduce cross-border crimes in the two countries.

A not so good neighbour Since the writer wished to laud Uganda’s good neighborliness, it has to be fair to take a closer look at that claim. Naturally, a good neighbor cannot, at the same, be the custodian of your enemies. But when one looks at the dealings between Uganda’s security organs and Rwanda’s fugitive army deserters, then one is left questioning the genuineness of this “good neighbor.” Tribert Ayabatwa Rujugiro, once jailed in South Africa and United Kingdom for tax evasion, has gone on record vowing to “bring down” the Kigali administration. It is common knowledge that he’s the chief financier of the terrorist group, Rwanda National Congress (RNC), a terror organization that is responsible for blasting grenades in Kigali, injuring and killing innocent women and children. Rujugiro has business partnerships with senior government officials, including the President’s brother, Salim Saleh; he also enjoys diplomatic/VIP treatment while in Uganda. At the White Castle Hotel, in Arua, onlookers are left astonished at the amount of security detail his son, Richard Rujungiro and cousin Claude Ndatinya, enjoy whenever they go to visit their tobacco business in this town.

Fugitives and rebel recruiters such as Rugema Kayumba, Maj.Habib and Capt Sibo have found sanctuary in Kampala; they work closely with Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Militarily Intelligence (CMI) when recruiting rebels and spreading fabricated propaganda on Rwanda. Is this how a genuine good neighbor behaves? Enter Fake petitions Just last week the Banyarwanda community in Uganda apparently took a petition to parliament denouncing what they called “Rwanda’s harassment” of refugees living there who are in ‘fear of being kidnapped and forcefully repatriated. The petition flopped because it was based on empty lies. But what surprised everyone is that the Uganda Police spokesman confessed that the “refugees were unable to petition parliament due to the absence of Security Minister Lt. Gen Henry Tumukunde,” according to media reports. “Their coming to parliament is awaiting Tumukunde’s return,” said the spokesperson of the police. Again, anyone with knowledge of the workings of parliament knows that parliament is petitioned through the Speaker and not a minister. In his capacity as Minister, Gen. Tumukunde, shouldn’t be anywhere near that petition, at least not until the Speaker receives the petition, forwards it to the subcommittee on security, then the committee, depending on its findings, summons the minister if necessary. Therefore, to delay the petition until “Tumukunde’s return” to parliament is to enjoin him as a party to the petition in some capacity.

Investment between Tribert Rujugiro and Salim Saleh The author alleges that a recent document exposing a business partnership between Saleh and Rujugiro is “falsified.” Indeed, Ligomarch Advocates, Rujugiro’s lawyers, did respond denying that such an agreement between Saleh and Rujugiro exits. But what were they expected to say. The fact is that a purchase agreement between these two individuals exists and is available in Uganda’s registry of companies for anyone interested to verify. As a matter of fact, if further details on this business marriage are needed, we will readily avail them. If the author of the article had done an “investigation” as claimed, he or she at the very least would have told the readers, for purposes of full disclosure, that Rujugiro and Ruth Sebatindira’s family have deep ties that go way back to the time in Burundi when Rujugiro was in Mpimba prison in Burundi. Sebatindira’s father, Mathew Karegesa aka Mutini, a Munyarwanda who served in Iddi Amin’s army but fled to Burundi after Amin’s fall, is the one who helped Rujugiro escape from prison in Bujumbura. As a reward for this rescue, Rujugiro took custody of Karegesa’s children when he (Mitini) died. He paid school fees for Ruth right from secondary school through her masters in the UK. It, therefore, not surprising that Ruth is the managing secretary of Rujugiro’s tobacco business in Uganda, in which Saleh owns 15% shareholding. Rwandan blood liberated Uganda The writer stoops lowest when he says Rwandan leadership is ungrateful to Uganda. The author ostensibly quotes a source thus, “We were shocked to learn that General Kabareebe, under the instructions of his boss, was spreading harmful propaganda against President Museveni. Has Kabareebe forgotten where he came from? Or does he think that Rwandese can easily forget who supported their struggle to return to their motherland when the rest of the world looked on?” Herein lies the crux of the matter. The writer would have contributed much to forging good neighborliness had he/she spend much of his time on this subject. Rwandans are aware that they spent 30 years in Uganda as refugees. This is a fact that will place the hospitality of Ugandans in the annals of history. It is the attitude that is carried by those in power, and their propaganda machines, that undermines this relationship.

Uganda and Rwanda have undertaken liberation struggles. As a matter of fact, Rwandans spilled blood while helping to liberate Uganda and played an integral role in bringing the current leadership to power. And so, the attitude that some Ugandans in power continue to harbour that seeks to perpetually treat Rwandans as subordinates who should remain under tutelage because the former had some role to play in the latter’s struggle is the gist of the problem. As a result, the point the writer wants to draw is that Rwandans are ungrateful on the basis that they have refused perpetual tutelage. This has always been the problem. Some leaders in Uganda have failed to understand that Rwanda is a sovereign state with a sovereign government and not an extension of Uganda. Therefore, to question “has Kabareebe forgotten where he came from” is provocative because it may lead to a similar question: “Has NRM forgotten who fought and brought it to power?”

Jimmy Opis is a Kenya based commentator with keen interest in regional political affairs.

Source: STANDARD MEDIA – KENYA

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