By David Himbara
It is not good news when a Rwandan opposition leader’s name appears in General Paul Kagame’s propaganda newspapers. Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza appeared in Igihe.com and KT Press. Both newspapers allege that Umuhoza held a meeting in which she committed two crimes.
Firstly, the papers allege that Ingabire practiced genocide ideology by announcing a plan for building an exclusively Hutu political party. Secondly, the papers allege that Ingabire called for the rise of a people-power for ousting of the Kagame regime — as just happened in Sudan.
There is one problem here — Ingabire’s meeting did not materialize, let alone give her a platform to exercise genocide ideology or advocate people power. Independent reports on what happened at the meeting venue give an entirely different account. Indeed, anyone familiar with how Kagame destroys opposition parties and their leaders would also already know that his security organs would not permit such a meeting to be held unmolested.
What happened was that Ingabire went to Kirehe District to attend a meeting organised by the representatives of her party, FDU-INKINGI. At the beginning of the meeting, gangs entered the venue — uninvited. Ingabire’s attempts at persuading the gangs to leave proved futile. She then decided to leave the venue. Meanwhile, those left at the venue including her assistant were attacked and thoroughly beaten. The Kagame operatives then rewrote the meeting’s agenda and the meeting’s minutes that fitted their ill-motives.
The irony is that a video in which individuals give testimonies to the effect that Ingabire is a genocide ideologue are the very people who invaded her meeting. The thugs who attacked a peaceful meeting are now star witnesses in the emerging fabricated case against Ingabire.
Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza is already summoned by the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) to appear at its headquarters at 11:00 on May 14, 2019. This, obviously does not look good for Ingibire or any other opposition leader who hopes to engage in democratic politics inside an iron-fisted dictatorship.