On January 1, 2017, while people all over the world were celebrating the New Year’s Day, the trigger-happy men of the Rwandan army based in Ruhengeri celebrated the New Year’s Day in a despicable style by shooting dead Mr. Mugisha on suspicion of having stolen a goat. In Rwanda, human life has become so cheap that stealing a goat or a bunch of green bananas is punishable by death.
The late Mugisha, son of Mr. Yadusoneye Augustin and Mrs. Kakuze Emerthe of Rwimpongo Village , Ruragwe Cell, Rubengera Sector and Karongi District was shot dead by members of the rwandan army around 9am following his arrest for stealing a goat.
On January 8, 2016, Mr. Sekanabo Janvier was shot dead near the capital Kigali, Kabuga Cell, Rusororo Sector, Gasabo District, after being picked by the Police from his home at around 1pm. There are strong suspicions by neighbours that he was killed because he was opposed to the redistribution of his father’s land. His father is said to be in prison for the same reason.
We would also like to recall the following unarmed civilians who have recently been shot by security services:
- Mr. Rukundo, son of Mr. Hitimana and Mrs. Nyirampuguje of Cyeza Village, Munanira Cell, Nyamyumba Sector, Rubavu District, Western Province was shot dead by a soldier on December 6, 2016 on suspicion of having stolen cows.
- Mr. Nshimiyimana Innocent, son of Mr. Buhinja Simon and Mrs. Nyirankundimana Gaudence of Rebero Village, Munanira Cell, Nyamyumba Sector, Rubavu District, Western Province was shot dead on December 1, 2016 by a soldier on suspicion of having stolen a bunch of bananas.
- Mr. Nzabonimana Jean Claude of Ngoma District was killed on December 5, 2016. According to Imirasire newspaper, Mr. Nzabonimana was shot dead by the police on suspicion of having stolen a computer. The newspaper was later pressured to retract the article.
What a tragedy for Rwanda to see a regime that is notoriously known for its total disregard for human life pushing ahead to entrench itself in power by granting a third term to President Kagame in the already concluded elections scheduled for August 2017!
We condemn unreservedly the extrajudicial killings of unarmed civilians and call upon the government to investigate these crimes and bring the perpetrators to face the law.
We call upon the international community and the financial backers of the Rwandan regime to put pressure on the Rwandan government so that it may respect human life, stop extrajudicial killings and all other forms of violation of human rights.
Done in London, UK, on January 10, 2017
Commissioner for External Relations