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Rwandan opposition party member, Dusabumuremyi stabbed to death2 minutes read

Ingabire’s party has lost several members to mysterious deaths and disappearances, which it sees as an attack on dissenting voices

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Rwandan opposition party member stabbed to death

A Rwandan opposition party said Tuesday that one of its officials had been stabbed and murdered, fuelling concerns over a string of unsolved killings of its members.

Victoire Ingabire, leader of the unregistered but vocal FDU-Inkingi party, said Syridio Dusabumuremyi had been attacked by two men on Monday night in the shop where he worked.

“Our party deplores the assassination of its national coordinator, Mr Dusabumuremyi. He was savagely stabbed by two individuals this Monday shortly after 9 pm,” Ingabire told reporters.

“After several unsolved assassinations of our party members, we have no hope that his murder will be fully investigated and solved,” she added.

Rwandan police said two suspects had already been detained.

“Two people have been arrested in connection with the murder and investigations are ongoing,” the Rwanda Investigative Bureau (RIB) said in a statement.

Ingabire’s party has lost several members to mysterious deaths and disappearances, which it sees as an attack on dissenting voices in the country.

In March, party spokeman Anselm Mutuyimana, was abducted and his body was found in a forested area in the west of the country.

A man was later arrested as a suspect in his death, but no details around the suspect were provided. 

RIB spokesperson Modeste Mbabazi told reporters “investigations are ongoing.”

Another member, Eugene Ndereyimana, has been missing since July and is feared dead.

Amnesty International said in a statement that Dusabumuremyi’s murder was “extremely alarming” and called for a thorough and independent investigation.

“It’s all the more troubling that it follows numerous suspicious attacks, including the disappearance of an FDU-Inkingi party member barely two months ago, and the death of yet another in March,” said the rights group’s regional director, Joan Nyanyuki, in a statement.

“It is essential that the Government of Rwanda protects the rights to freedom of expression and association, including for opposition politicians, and ends the current climate of harassment and intimidation they face.”

Ingabire, a critic of the government, was released from jail in September last year after receiving an unexpected presidential pardon. 

She was arrested in 2010 as she planned to contest elections against President Paul Kagame.

Ingabire, an ethnic Hutu, was accused of “genocide ideology” and “divisionism” after publicly questioning the government narrative of the 1994 genocide of mostly Tutsi people that killed around 800,000 people.

Members of Ingabire’s party were frequently arrested during her detention, and human rights groups accused the military of torturing them.

Rights groups accuse Kagame of ruling with an iron fist, clamping down on dissent and opposition politicians.

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East Africa Politics News

Malawians escape isolation center after repatriation from South Africa

The 441 Malawians were bussed home on Monday from South Africa, where they were left stranded after the country closed its borders in March to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

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Deserted isolation centre in Blantyre, Malawi. Twiter/@zodiakonline

More than 400 people have escaped from a coronavirus quarantine centre in Malawi’s second largest city, Blantyre, after complaining about its poor state.

The 441 Malawians were bussed home on Monday from South Africa, where they were left stranded after the country closed its borders in March to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

More than a dozen were staying in an isolation centre after testing positive for the virus at the border.

The rest had been quarantined at a soccer stadium, where they were awaiting further test results.

“They have all gone home on their own,” district health officer Gift Kawaladzira told AFP.

“By then, 16 were positive already. Others were waiting for lab results,” he said. “If most of them have COVID-19, then we are facing very difficult times ahead.”

Kawaladzira said his team had mobilised other district offices to track down the escapees.

“The danger is that they will be hiding from authorities and hence cannot follow the set procedures for COVID-19 prevention,” he warned.

Doreen Lemani, who worked as a domestic cleaner in South Africa, said she returned home to Malawi fleeing tough economic conditions under the lockdown, only to be met by chaos in Blantyre.

“They did not provide us with food, and the toilets and showers here are in a horrible state. How did they expect us to stay here?” asked the woman, who was among those who left the stadium.

“We had wilfully offered ourselves to be tested, but this is chaos… Now they are telling us that they can’t find our test results,” the woman told a local TV station.

Malawi has recorded just 101 coronavirus cases so far, including four deaths.

South Africa by contrast has the highest number of infections of the continent, with more than 24,000 cases and 524 fatalities to date.

“I can guarantee you that the repatriation itself caused a lot of the people themselves to get sick,” warned Gama Bandawe, a virologist at the Malawi University of Science and Technology.

“Think about all the security personnel looking after these people, the escapees and the families of people. It’s a very big danger.”

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East Africa Politics News

“I have not killed any Tutsis”, Rwandan genocide suspect Kabuga tells court

“Since 1994, Felicien Kabuga, known to have been the financier of Rwanda genocide, had with impunity stayed in Germany, Belgium, Congo-Kinshasa, Kenya, or Switzerland,” a French justice ministry statement said.

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A wanted poster with a photograph of Felicien Kabuga is displayed at the French Gendarmerie's Central Office for Combating Crimes Against Humanity, Genocides and War Crimes (OCLCH) in Paris on May 19, 2020. © Benoît Tessier, REUTERS

Arrested Rwandan genocide suspect Felicien Kabuga has told a French court that the international charges against him are lies, affirming his innocence at the resumed hearing on Wednesday.

Asked if he understood the charges made against him by a United Nations tribunal, Kabuga dismissed the chargesheet as full of “lies”.

“All of this is lies. I have not killed any Tutsis. I was working with them”, Kabuga told the court through an interpreter.

Kabuga, who was arrested near Paris earlier this month after more than two decades on the run, is accused of financing and arming the ethnic Hutu militia that slaughtered over 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus in 1994.

France has not disclosed when and how Kabuga who had a $5m US reward on his head, entered France.

“Since 1994, Felicien Kabuga, accused of being a financier of Rwandan genocide, had stayed in Germany, Belgium, Congo-Kinshasa, Kenya, or Switzerland,” a French justice ministry statement said.

His ability to hide to evade an international manhunt for more than 20 years has raised questions over whether he had accomplices in foreign countries.

“It is difficult to imagine he could have escaped into French territory without the help of accomplices in such places,” Patrick Baudoin of the International Federation for Human Rights said.

The International Federation for Human Rights has supported survivors in the prosecution of other Rwandan genocide suspects living in France.

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Tanzania summons top US diplomat over coronavirus warning

The US embassy’s charge d’affaires, Inmi Patterson, met with Wilbert Ibuge, permanent secretary at the Tanzanian foreign ministry, who reminded Patterson about the two countries’ “historical cooperation”.

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Tanzania plans October 1 date for repatriation of Burundian refugees
Tanzanian President John Magufuli has repeatedly played down the gravity of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Tanzanian government said Tuesday it had summoned a top diplomat at the US Embassy in the country to object to an advisory that warned of “exponential growth” of COVID-19 cases in the country.

The United states embassy’s “health advisory” published earlier this month contained inaccurate information, the foreign ministry said in a statement.
The advisory reported, for instance, that “many hospitals” in Dar es Salaam, the economic capital, “have been overwhelmed in recent weeks”.

This claim “is not true and could cause panic among Tanzanians and foreigners”, the foreign ministry’s statement said as quoted by AFP.

The US embassy’s charge d’affaires, Inmi Patterson, met with Wilbert Ibuge, permanent secretary at the foreign ministry, who reminded Patterson about the two countries’ “historical cooperation”, the foreign ministry said.
It did not specify when the meeting took place.

The US embassy in Tanzania has been without an ambassador since 2016.
Tanzanian President John Magufuli has repeatedly played down the gravity of the coronavirus pandemic, and it has been nearly a month since the country released official data on case numbers, which stood at 480 with 16 deaths on April 29.

Last week the government announced that universities and sports events would resume in June and also lifted restrictions on flights, even as critics say cases are soaring.

Opposition politicians have criticised the lack of data, which the government stopped giving after Magufuli cast doubt on the credibility of laboratory equipment and technicians.

Laboratory officials were suspended earlier this month after Magufuli said he had secret tests performed in which a papaya and a goat tested positive.
Tanzania’s approach contrasts with that of neighbours such as Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya, which imposed full lockdowns or curfews and movement restrictions and which have been giving detailed daily updates.

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