By Jean Gatera
A Kampala-based outlet of misinformation, Commandonepost yesterday, Wednesday 19, published an article claiming that, “Rwanda has imposed a ban on Tanzanian cement.”
A simple investigation, however, exposes the article of Commandonepost – a blog site run by one Bob Atwine, long exposed to be on the payroll of Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence, CMI, in its campaign of anti-Rwanda propaganda – to be a fabrication.
According to sources in Rwanda’s private sector, as we write this, there are over 500 trucks of cement imports on their way from Tanzania to Rwanda. Rwanda currently has a program in place to build more schools for her children, and to this end, 70 percent of the cement being used is imported from Tanzania, mainly Twiga and Simba brands.
Our private sector sources indicate that imports from Kenya, plus locally manufactured Rwandan brands like Cimerwa make up the rest of the 30 percent consumed in Rwanda.
“It is simply a laughable lie”, a trade official told us, “Rwanda has no ban on any Tanzanian goods or products, and certainly there are no issues with Tanzanian cement.” The official observed that the “cement ban” hoax could be just another attempt to drive a wedge between Rwanda and Tanzania. “So cheap!” he added.
“It is obvious this article (of Commandonepost) is by someone trying to hoodwink readers with terminologies to portray ‘expertise in trade matters’, but it is fake and contrived,” said another source.
“Kigali has turned to Tanzania as an alternative for more products through Rusumo One-Stop Border Post,” says Commandonepost. The article then goes on to name a string of other Tanzanian products that is states “are flooding the Rwandan market.”
Such statements prompt people in Kigali to ask: “what business is it of the Ugandan regime’s where we buy our goods? Those people really have a problem!”
In claims such as Commandonepost’s, others see attempts at sabotage because of what Kampala has been crying is “border closure” by Rwanda. The attempts at sabotage can be further seen in statements such as, “Kagame has now changed his mind, and is now turning to Kenya as the last resort for essential commodities.”
Reading this, a Kigali official that spoke in a private capacity said: “You see, they keep coming up with all these invented, childish stories.” And the reason, he continued, is not difficult to discern. “It is because of their (Uganda) obsession with border closure!”
Rwanda at the beginning of March 2019 announced a travel advisory against her citizens crossing to Uganda, explaining they couldn’t guarantee the security of Rwandans once in Uganda. Foreign Minister (at the time) Richard Sezibera wrote on his official Twitter account: “hundreds of Rwandans face harassment and persecution in Uganda; they suffer incarceration without consular access, deportations, etc.”
Kigali, it has long been reported, repeatedly protested the acts of Uganda’s security services of harassment of Rwandan nationals in the form of arbitrary arrests, illegal detention, incommunicado, torture and other inhumane acts mostly by agents of CMI. All this, Kigali had been protesting, was in execution of a policy of hostility that began when Uganda decided to team up with groups sworn to destabilize the security of Rwanda – the likes of RNC, FDLR, RUD-Urunana and others.
“But this act of Rwanda’s to protect her people seems to have pained Uganda so much, they keep inventing all this propaganda, including lies meant to create suspicion between Tanzania and Rwanda,” our source said. “But it won’t work, because the truth is in the open!”