By Patience Kirabo
Two men, Emmanuel Maniragaba 32 and John Sebudirimba 60 yesterday Thursday 12 fled from the wrath of the Uganda People’s Defense Force agents in Kisoro District following a brutal, inhuman beating. John Sebudirimba, a Ugandan who resides in Kisoro District close to the border with Rwanda, was mistaken by the security agents to be Rwandan. Maniragaba is a Rwandan national who has been a resident of Kisoro.
The victims both managed to escape from the security agents in the wee hours of the morning and arrived at Cyanika Border Post in critical condition. They were immediately rushed to Cyanika Health Center for first aid and emergency treatment to save their lives. They bear deep cut wounds, torture marks, and bleeding bruises and can barely speak due to the trauma.
The two went through the same ordeal that hundreds of Rwandan nationals have been subjected to for the past three years. And matters have escalated recently where the Ugandan security forces have overtly rounded up Rwandan nationals in Kisoro, bundled and threw them onto trucks to be taken to unknown places. They have been dumping others at the borders in deplorable conditions.
Before this incident, several other Rwandans have been beaten or stoned by Uganda security agents in what seems like a pattern of organized persecution that often ends in illegal incarceration either in prisons, “safe houses” or torture dungeons. Maniragaba and Sebudirimba were brutalized by soldiers of the UPDF.
The Ugandan government since adopting its anti-Rwanda hostility is now increasingly taking its wrath out on Rwandan nationals. They never arrest them in any legally defined manner, attorneys of different Rwandan citizens that have suffered such a fate emphasize. The only apparent reason is their nationality.
Due to the continued harassment of her citizens, Rwanda put out a travel advisory warning citizens not to cross to Uganda since their security was not guaranteed early in March this year. As a result Ugandan traders and businesses are crying tears to Museveni, that without Rwandan customers things have become very bad!
“But instead of finding better solutions, Ugandan forces are instead increasing mistreatment of innocent Rwandan civilians,” remarked a border resident.
In addition to the harassment, abuse, and torture, hundreds of Rwandans have been subjected to forced, hard labor that borders on slave conditions in prisons all over Uganda. They are overworked in harsh conditions almost without but whatever little they are given is smelly kawunga and watery beans full of weevils. No medical treatment is given when one falls sick.
Rwandans in those prisons and the many unknown detention places are held for months and even years without a single trial in court. In a corrupt pattern, officials from Uganda Government have forced many into registering as refugees. This is to inflate refugee numbers so as to receive millions of dollars from the UN meant for refugees.
The UN oversight office in the past has shown how the Uganda Office of the Prime Minister embezzled millions through inflated refugee numbers, false fuel claims, and other corrupt gimmicks. German and Japan decided to cut off funding for the Ugandan refugee programs, joining the UK in that decision.
The other reason Ugandan security agencies abduct so many is to try to forcefully recruit them for anti-Rwanda terror groups such as RNC.