There are ongoing cases of smuggling into Rwandan territory in areas bordering to Uganda, particularly in Nyagatare district – Rwempasha, Tabagwe and Karama. Investigations conducted by The Great Lakes Eyes prove that the smugglers are facilitated by Ugandan security services and police to bring in illegal materials into Rwanda including the banned waragi commonly known as “Kanyanga” and others are involved in the illegal sell of pineapples and second hand clothes. The increased cases of smuggling are due to Uganda’s security organs who are tirelessly involved in any acts of provocation and economic sabotage to justify Museveni’s Economic sabotage policy against Rwanda and to label Rwanda as a hunger stricken state due to the closure of the borders with Uganda. The increased cases of smuggling activities on the Rwanda-Uganda border comes at the time when President Museveni once stated on 15 April 2019 while meeting high ranking military officials from 11 countries at Masindi State Lodge in western Uganda that the closure of the border by Rwanda is a ‘hiccup’ that will not slow down the region and that people would consider alternative means to trade. He stated that “Even if the border is closed, trade will go on; only that it will be through smuggling. You can’t stop trade through border administration. People resort to smuggling. Others have resorted to export a lot of things to South Sudan, DR Congo, Kenya and Tanzania,” said President Museveni. With such statements, it is a justification that the ongoing cases are facilitated by Ugandan’s security organs to justify his statement and to implement Museveni’s directive and belligerent policies against Rwanda.
The recent shooting incident in Nyagatare district, Tabagwe sector follows other similar cases involving smugglers who are engaged in a more coordinated provocative attacks and attempts to fight night Patrols on Rwandan side in bid for smugglers to enter Rwanda. Eye witness accounts that in most cases the intercepted smugglers run to Ugandan side for shelter and later are being facilitated to return back to Rwanda.
The shooting incident that occurred on May 25, 2019 has been blown by Uganda’s security organs and media sponsored by CMI and ISO beyond the proportions.
The shooting incident occurred when the two smugglers engaged in a fight with the police at night patrol. According to witnesses, Ugandans who had intervened to support the smugglers pulled to the Ugandan side the dead body and the injured person. According to the eye witness, the body was taken at Imisave center guarded by the Ugandan police to avoid any possibility of evacuating it by its relatives or by security organs in Rwanda. Further reports by witnesses indicate that Uganda’s Police shot thrice in the air when they suspected that the Rwandans were coming to evacuate the body. The injured person was taken to Kamwezi health Center for treatment but died upon arrival. The two bodies were taken to Kabare Hospital for postmortem analysis. Contrary, media reports like chimp reports and others linked to CMI and ISO reported that the incident took place on the Ugandan side but as a matter of fact, the area market as scene of incident is largely on Rwandan territory.
According to sources in Uganda’s police , Security organs in Uganda denied to participate in a joint investigations, to maintain their earlier assertion and claim that appeared in the media that a Ugandan national was shot and killed on the Ugandan territory by Rwandan security organs.
CMI and ISO still engaged in the acts of kidnapping Rwandans
Information obtained by The Great Lakes Eye indicate that in Kamwezi Sub County, Kashekye Parish Rwamatunguru Village, Ugandan police in collaboration with CMI Staff whose name is held for security purposes, kidnapped two Rwandans; Samvura Jean Pierre 47Yrs, a resident of Nyagatare District, Tabagwe Sector, Tabagwe Cell, Gakamba Village and Habiyaremye Eric alias Fils a resident of Tabagwe Cell, Kagarama Village.
The arrested were found in a catholic Church at Rwamatunguru and arrested on spot, where they had been persuaded to Uganda via illegal routes by one Muhwezi Silver known as Sili, a resident of Uganda, Rukiga District, Kamwezi Sub County, Kashekye Parish, Kiruhura Village, who invited them in a baptism party for his children.
According to security analysts following closely issues of Rwanda- Uganda assert that people should expect more provocative acts and likely new suspicious deployments if nothing is done on the diplomatic side.
Moses Lukwago for The Great Lakes Eye