By Jackson Mutabazi
Chimpreports, a Ugandan news website that’s distinguished itself as a conduit of anti-Kigali misinformation has – this Tuesday, 2 April 2019 – published an article on Kayumba Nyamwasa that the Rwandan fugitive could not have written better himself.
The article begins by quoting the words of Nyamwasa as published in a Zambian news outlet. In it he says that he “has expressed determination to ‘peacefully return’ to his home country”, because “the cost of war is so high” and that “conflicts do not necessarily give birth to democracy and prosperity.”
What exactly does this mishmash of words mean? How does one for instance express determination to peacefully return to his country? You either go back home, or you don’t. In normal life you don’t say you are “determinedly” going somewhere that’s your home.
It sounds Orwellian, like in the novel 1984 in which one of the most memorable slogans is, “war is peace”. Is Nyamwasa saying “peace” when he means “war”? Is it for instance supposed to be re-assuring when the man says “the cost of war is high?”
So why does he not begin by declaring he is disbanding his RNC terror group that has already killed people in Rwanda and injured hundreds, with grenade attacks?
When the man declares he is ready to go home peacefully while saying nothing of his RNC which, right now – hand in hand with Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence – is harassing, illegally arresting, and torturing Rwandan citizens in Uganda, what message does it convey?
It is no secret that Ugandan President Museveni has given RNC carte blanche to recruit fighters, from areas with Banyarwanda populations in Uganda, which it does with the assistance of CMI and ISO, who then facilitate the recruits’ travel to training camps in eastern DRC.
Chimpreports is saying nothing of this. It says nothing of the UN Group of Experts on DRC report of 31 December 2018 that detailed the activities of RNC in the DR Congo, how it gets weapons transported to it; how Nyamwasa himself has been visiting the camps and similar facts.
A real news organisation would then ask: “how do you claim you want to peacefully return to a country when you are so clearly involved in subversive activity against that very country?
The game Nyamwasa is playing here, thinking he is being very clever, is to pretend that he (and by extension his group) are “the peaceful party” while the Rwandan government is the belligerent one.
Chimpreports is in on the game as the willing conduit of propaganda that’s so easy to see through. It becomes more obvious with Nyamwasa’s next words, in response to another softball question – how long would it take him to return home?
“It will take me a lot of effort in the sense that we are talking about peaceful means,” says the man. “When we talk about peace, you must be aware that it is a long, protracted process, and that is what we are pursuing.”
Really? Is the man parroting his paymaster Museveni with the Maoist jargon about “protracted” methods?, one may ask when they read that.
We will get back to that in a moment. But first, if Nyamwasa actually wanted to go back home, why not jump on a plane – I think Rwandair flies to South Africa – and in four hours you will be in Kigali? Why should that be a “protracted process”?
Unless of course he is talking about war, like Museveni used to do, talking of “a protracted people’s struggle” decades ago when he went to war against Obote?
Yet Nyamwasa is lying to himself if he even for a moment imagines anyone in Rwanda would support his harebrained ideas to bring conflict back. He is lying to himself and he is lying to Museveni, his main backer, and others in their anti-Rwanda coalition.
Rwanda is not a failed state such that one will find the conditions for so-called “protracted struggles”. In fact Rwanda is the complete opposite of a failed state. It is one that has earned plaudits all over the world for service delivery to all citizens, poor and well off. It has one of the best records in fighting misuse of public resources. It is a state of strong, functional institutions – mostly those that buttress the rule of law.
We aren’t even talking of what any rebel, or any hostile invader that entered Rwandan space would be up against: one of the most fearsome, but professional militaries in the region.
Simply put, there is nothing conducive, or favorable to a violent uprising, or war (whether protracted or not) in Rwanda.
Even whether anyone claims they “want to bring democracy”, all Rwandans are represented in the government. They have worked out their system of representative government.
That is why it becomes just amusing when one reads Kayumba parroting another of Museveni’s lines: “ours has nothing to do with change of guards, it means fundamental change, change the situation in Rwanda!”
Does this man think he is Yoweri Museveni fighting Milton Obote? I burst out laughing.
Can’t he at least be a little bit original?