PRESS RELEASE nº 013/2017
On December 13, 2013 the Supreme Court unjustly sentenced Victory
Ingabire President of the UDF-Inkingi to 15 years in jail. After failing
to get justice from national courts, Ms. Victoire Ingabire, appealed to
the African Court of Human and Peoples ‘ Rights (ACHPR), the court
responsible for deciding on multiple Human rights violations, to be
reinstated in her rights. The Court’s judgment has acknowledged that she
had indeed been denied her fundamental rights and freedoms .
The court has ruled that Mrs Victoire Ingabire did not propagate or
imply the theory of double genocide, nor the genocidal ideology, nor
minimized the genocide committed against the Tutsi in her statement at
Gisozi genocide memorial. The court also ruled that she did not spread
rumours intended to incite the population to rise up against the
existing authorities. The court highlighted the fact her statement made
criticising the authorities are expected in a democratic society and
should be tolerated especially when they come from a public figure like
Mrs Victoire Ingabire. According to the court, the conviction and
sentence served on Mrs Ingabire violate her right to freedom of
expressed as enshrined in article 9(2) of the African Charter on Hunan
and People’s rights and article 19(3) of the International convention on
political and civil rights.
The court has also found that the applicant’s right to defence under
article 7(1) (c) of the African Charter on human and people’s rights had
In the light of the opinions and considerations, as well as the
conclusions of the ACHPR, the platform urges the unconditional release
of Mrs Victoire Ingabire and to be reinstated in her rights.
The platform recalls that the RPF regime continues to misuse articles
461 and 463 of the Rwandan Penal Code to gag the opposition and continue
to close the political space. It is in this context that the leadership
of the UDF-Inkingi in Rwanda, were rounded up in September 2017 and that
Ms. Diane and Ms Adeline Rwigara are currently in prison.
The platform calls on the sponsors of General Kagame’s regime, and more
particularly the Netherlands, Great Britain, Belgium, the USA and the
EU, to put pressure on him to release all political prisoners and who
are in prison for having expressed their opinions.
Done in Brussels on 16 December 2017
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