Recently, the journalist NTWARI John Williams died officially due to a road traffic accident where he was hit from the back by a car while he was on a motorbike on the road leading to UNILAK in Gashiha cell, Kicukiro district. There remains a certain discrepancy between observers who are divided about whether it was a vulgar road accident or a premeditated murder plotted and executed by the Kigali regime given that he was voicing out criticisms against about injustice committed by the regime against Rwandan citizens especially the population unlawfully chased from the suburbs of Kangondo and wetlands of the capital where they were expelled without any compensation and just relegated to the street without worrying about the life of those vulnerable people; imprisonment of contestant journalists such as Cyuma Hassan Dieudonné; Karasira Aimable; Idamange Yvonne; Dr Kayumba Christopher; the mismanagement of covid-19 where rights of people were scandalously infringed; and other numerous violations of human rights. The present analysis intends to find out the real version of this sad death that exacerbated the fear of the press world.
Ntwali’s family was informed of his death on January 19, 2023, when the police asked Ntwali’s brother to identify his body at the Kacyiru Hospital morgue. The police told the New Times that Ntwali died in a motorbike accident in Kimihurura, Kigali, on January 18 at 2:50 a.m. However, two weeks after the alleged accident, Rwandan authorities have failed to provide a police report, the exact location of the alleged accident, any photo or video evidence, or detailed information on the others involved in it. A journalist who saw Ntwali a day before his death told Voice of America that: “He looked cautious and switched off his phone before we started talking… He said phones could not be trusted. He told me that all the doors on which he knocked were closed but he was determined to face life. His death was so sudden.” Ntwali played a leading role in covering and bringing attention to the plight of Kangondo neighborhood residents, who are in a long-standing dispute with the authorities over land evictions. At the time, he told Al Jazeera: “I’m focused on justice, human rights, and advocacy… the three are risky here in Rwanda. But I’m committed…. Those who try to speak out, they are jailed – harassed, intimidated or jailed. Second, forced to flee their country. Three, some of them disappear in thin air. Or even, they die.”Ntwali was also one of only a few journalists in Rwanda independently covering high profile, politicized trials of journalists, commentators and opposition members, and posting videos about their conditions in prison. In June 2022, he told Human Rights Watch about the torture wounds he had seen on some of these critics and opponents. Recently, he also published videos on his YouTube channel about people who had suspiciously “disappeared.” His last video, posted on January 17, was about the reported disappearance of a genocide survivor who had spoken out about being beaten by police officers in 2018. Rwanda has an obligation, under international human rights law, to ensure an effective investigation into Ntwali’s death. The right to life is enshrined in the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, and according to the Declaration of Principles on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information in Africa, “States shall take effective legal and other measures to investigate, prosecute and punish perpetrators of attacks against journalists and other media practitioners, and ensure that victims have access to effective remedies.”
Analysis : coincidences do not exist !
As in the case of late Rwigara Assinapol, the Kigali regime hides behind the pretext of a road accident to slyly eliminate his detractors.
The case RP 00142/2023/TB/KICU public prosecution vs BAGIRISHYA Moise Emmanuel
The public prosecution on the primary level The prosecution accused BAGIRISHYA Moise Emmanuel of committing the crime of involuntary bodily harm and involuntary manslaughter, offences committed on 18/01/2023 the crimes which were perpetrated around 3:20 a.m the police was informed by a person called Nyagakenke Alex who says that the taxi accident hit a motorbike from KIMIHURURA at MYEMBE and it was speeding towards UNILAK and hit the back of the motorbike that was leaving a person and the driver named Nyagakenke Alex was injured and both vehicles were damaged.
As evidence the accused admits that he committed the road traffic offence of speeding on the road without lights because of his failure and he forced himself to avoid the police stationed on the Rwandan road who was punishing him because his car did not undergo technical control.
He admits that he made the mistake of speeding on the road without lights because of his failure and he forced himself to avoid the police stationed on the Rwandan road who was punishing him because his car did not undergo technical control. The prosecution testified that he did not leave a distance between his vehicle and the motorcycle that was in front of him fact which leaded to hitting it while facing it in front of him.
Consequently, the public prosecution required the application of the provisions of the law no68/2018 determining offences and penalties in general whereby for the Manslaughter and its punishment, a person convicted of manslaughter is liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than six (6) months and not more than two (2) years and a fine of not less than five hundred thousand Rwandan francs (FRW 500,000) and not more than two million Rwandan francs (FRW 2,000,000) or only one of these penalties. For the Unintentional bodily harm, upon conviction, any person who, through carelessness, inattention, negligence, lack of precaution and foresight, causes bodily harm to another person but without any intention of endangering his/her life is liable to imprisonment for a term of at least three (3) months and not more than six (6) months and a fine of at least five hundred thousand Rwandan francs (FRW 500,000) and not more than one million Rwandan francs (FRW 1,000,000) or only one of these penalties. Furthermore, the public prosecution had requested against this unworthy driver, the revocation of his driving license. Regrettably, allegedly basing on the confession he made before judicial institutions and applying the accumulation of the two penalties as real concurrence, the primary court of Kicukiro sentenced the accused to 1000.000 i.e. 500.000 for each offence and get his license back after the judgment becomes enforceable.
An unintended crime or an accident planned and executed?
In the matter of road traffic accidents, it is legally difficult to distinguish from the facts the criminal intent and the involuntary character; instead everything depends on the position of the one who examines them; a world where subjectivity prevails.
It is ostensibly inconceivable that a professional driver hits a vehicle from behind because it is in his direct sight. Quite simply he fatally and intentionally hit it and this was facilitated by the fact that it was a motorcycle easy to overthrow; the pretext of evading the police for lacking technical control certificate also does not hold up and unfortunately investigators and prosecutors were quick to say that this evidence was knowingly set aside. Moreover, he succeeded in his fatal blow because the NTWALI John Williams was indeed transported by this motorcycle to say that he hit the target wanted by the Kigali regime.
A penalty visibly partial
To apply the rules applied in case real combination, the court had to accumulate penalties whereby the minimum of penalties was 1.000.000 while the maximum was 3.000.000 Rwandan francs while the imprisonment was from 2 years and 3 months to 3 years and 6 months. In this regards, we cannot fail to inquire why, facing a guy who after having killed someone and seriously injured another with irreparable damages on the vehicles expresses a simple confession, a heartless judge decides a penalty with such a leniency when death is at stake. If the accused pretended that he branched off in the direction of UNILAK road to avoid that the police stationed at the Rwandex Road should arrest him for the missing vehicle documents, by omitting to ask him if these documents of the vehicle were really missing; which could even push him to check with the technical control services, he prosecutor played the game of the suspect who did not know how to justify this bifurcation. Requesting dissuasive penalties which were not unluckily confirmed by the judge, the public prosecutor duly did his job well but we can reproach him for not having attacked this complacent judgment which favors this sinister henchman.
The presiding judge
In Rwandan judicial procedure, the single judge system is generally practiced and it offers an opportunity to easily access the judge in charge of the case without being compromised by his/her colleagues. It is often inappropriate to reveal state secrets to subordinates without salary benefits; consequently, that goes without saying and for good reason, the case was handled discretionarily by the president of the court, Mrs. Yankurije Valerie and this posed no problem for the officials who manipulated this judge as heads of courts are used to receiving injunctions from superiors in a judicial system where the independence of judges is unthinkable and that she already knew that the file was sensitive given the notoriety of the person who had died in this alleged accident.
A crime already forewarned
I’m told that after CHOGM [the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting], they won’t play around with us anymore. I’ve been told five or six times. I receive phone calls from private numbers. Some [intelligence] people have come to my house twice to tell me. NISS [National Intelligence and Security Services] has told me: ‘If you don’t change your tone, after CHOGM, you’ll see what happens to you.’
Besides, Ntwali was regularly threatened and attacked in pro-government media for his investigative reporting. In this context, Rushyashya, a pro-regime extremist newspaper, had threatened and vilified him calling him an enemy of the country, accusing him to be bribed by opponents of the regime who live abroad.
New modus operandi
The provocation of accidents is hardly evidenced and is more discrete and less noticed especially that even the hired henchmen do not risk serious penalties the law being already lenient in the matters of traffic accidents; just manslaughters and the judges automatically receive instructions on how to decide when the safety of the state is at stake. This new stratagem will surely benefit to the Kigali regime to eliminate the opponents maliciously will benefit the regime which was overwhelmed by the accusations of flagrant violations of human rights where the attacks on the lives of opponents often committed by the police in the prisons were unmasked because they were did not imagine how a handcuffed individual could run faster and escape from policemen. This was shamefully the cases of late Alfred Nsengiyumva,former executive secretary of Cyuve Sector in Musanze District, was shot and killed in a police cell; GASAKURE Emmanuel who was killed at the Police station in REMERA on the orders of President Kagame and his wife Jeanette Nyiramongi, on March 20, 2015, lying that he was going to escape and was in handcuffs, to cite a few.
Commonwealth trapped and betrayed
In the Commonwealth Charter of 2013, member states reaffirmed their core values and principles, including upholding human rights, freedom of expression, the rule of law and the role of civil society. The Commonwealth Principles on freedom of expression and the role of the media in good governance, adopted by the Commonwealth Law Ministers in November, state that “Member states should act decisively to end impunity through impartial, prompt and effective investigations into all alleged cases of killings, attacks and ill-treatment of journalists and media workers, by prosecutions to bring the instigators and perpetrators of such crimes to justice and by the provision of effective redress for the victims.”
On the other hand, paradoxically, they entrust the senior management of the organization to a tyrant and to a country which only violates these fundamental rights and repress political opponents in blood. Actually, Rwanda’s president is the Chair-in-Office of the Commonwealth since the last Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, held in Kigali, Rwanda, in June 2022. The Chair-in-Office represents the Commonwealth at high-level international meetings and the Commonwealth Secretary-General’s conflict prevention and resolution work for a two-year period.
Rwandan authorities have consistently failed to ensure credible investigations into and accountability for suspicious deaths of political opponents or high-profile critics, such as Kizito Mihigo in February 2020. Therefore, regional and international experts, such as the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions or the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights working group on the death penalty, extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary killings and enforced disappearances in Africa should be involved in the investigation.
Conclusion: the real version
NTWALI John Williams had just carried out an investigation into the circumstances of the tragic death of Dr. Fabien Twagiramungu, officially declared victim of a road accident when in reality he had been skillfully murdered by the Kigali regime through a certain Kamuronsi Yves who, after having received the ad hoc orders by telephone intentionally left his track to fatally hit him on the way of the pedestrians. He had already finished collecting the necessary data proving the targeted assassination and was preparing to publish them in foreign media because it proves being too risky to reveal such information bordering on politics at the local level. How does the Kigali regime now operate to get rid of people on the blacklist without being detected? The targeted opponent is being shadowed by people already hired for the operation and there are many of them among car taxi drivers, bikers, cabaret owners, prostitutes, etc. in short, the circles he has used to frequent are littered with henchmen ready to act if the opportunity arises. That taxi driver in question had been entrusted with the macabre mission and had followed the journalist in all his movements. when the latter took a motorcycle, the only option was to violently overturn the motorcycle and ensure that the victim succumbed the pretext of hiding from the police might not convince an objective and impartial investigator, prosecutor and judge, but as everyone was already briefed, this argument will be ignored and only the confession will be retained as a mitigating circumstance from which the fine which is not a problem for the regime which spends millions in the assassination of opponents and espionage. The staggering sums spent to be able to kill the late colonel Karegeya Patrick in South Africa constitute a more convincing testimony where planes and trains carrying officers disguised as civilians on a criminal mission circulated in southern Africa to coordinate the perpetration of the crime. In our humble opinion, in such a case of the death of a renowned journalist like NTWALI John Williams but also already threatened under the eyes of the international community, an effective investigation deserved to be independent, impartial, thorough, and transparent, conducted in full compliance with the Revised United Nations Manual on the Effective Prevention and Investigation of Extra-legal, Arbitrary and Summary Executions (The Minnesota Protocol on the Investigation of Potentially Unlawful Death). But this is not possible in a country where everything is under control and where slippage from the mission entrusted is unofficially punished by death.