Home Politics Uganda and Burundi court new rebel group against Rwanda

Uganda and Burundi court new rebel group against Rwanda

An investigative report unearths how Uganda and Burundi have escalated hostile acts against neighbor

By Didas Nahayo

Reliable sources have disclosed to this website that security officials from Uganda have joined forces with those of Burundi in escalated efforts to destabilize their neighbour Rwanda. The situation gets more bizarre, in that good neighbors are supposed to look out for each other’s welfare, yet these two governments daily demonstrate a lack of the basic wisdom that conniving to set fire to your neighbor’s house risks burning down your own.

Burundi and Uganda have instead gotten deeper into this unscrupulous alliance in support of any criminal group that openly declares war on Rwanda. Whereas the two countries have been closely working with Kayumba Nyamwasa’s RNC, now they have joined hands in another unholy alliance in support of Paul Rusesabagina’s rebel outfit.

This is the Rwanda Movement for Democratic Change that goes by the French acronym MRCD. The MRCD is an alliance led by Paul Rusesabagina, the Belgium-based former hotel manager best known for the highly marketed myth that he had saved people during the Genocide (on the contrary this fraud was extorting money from those that fled to the Milles Collines Hotel in need of sanctuary, and turning back those unable to pay, most of whom got slaughtered by the killers).

Read: Prosecution to move against Kayumba’s South Africa based terror network

Before this latest development – confirmed by independent sources – Uganda (and Burundi’s) scheming in support of Kayumba’s illegal, armed terrorist RNC group were once covert. Far-reaching developments have since blown the lid on the previously clandestine operations in support of RNC. Since then, Uganda’s links with the RNC and the role that the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI) plays in that scheme are now overt, much of it in the public domain. Who, for instance can forget the spectacle of the arrest and release of the RNC recruits that in fact had already confessed!

Now Rusesabagina’s MRCD joins Kayumba Nyamwasa’s RNC under CMI’s protection and facilitation as they mobilize in regions in Uganda with concentrations of Rwandans, such as Mubende, Masindi, Hoima, Kibale, Kagadi, Sembabule, and Nakivale, among others.

Rwandans in these communities are pressured to send their sons for training in DRC based camps and to contribute money to “the cause” with CMI playing an equally important role. Those who refuse to send their children or to contribute money are accused of being Kigali government sympathisers, and targeted for harassment and deportation; they are also branded spies.

Until recently, they were arrested and tortured in CMI ‘safe-houses’ (i.e. un-gazetted secret jails) before being dumped at the Gatuna border. Over the past six months or so, the notorious CMI has performed a variation of that skullduggery of planting guns on those that have refused their schemes, so as to justify their torture in military facilities and their trial in kangaroo “courts martial”. This is done in total violation of international norms, which require that their diplomatic representatives in Uganda be informed of their detention to enable them to be given consular and legal assistance.

CMI is also essential in the movement of the recruits from Uganda to the rebel training centers in eastern DRC via Bujumbura where they are received by top security officials, armed, and escorted across Lake Tanganyika. For instance, before they depart from Uganda, CMI provides the young men with fake travel documents and facilitates them to cross the border.

Read also: Uganda security tortures and deports another Rwandan

This investigation has unearthed that the frequency of the movements has led to the establishment of coordination cells at the Mutukula, Kikagati, Nyamirima and Butogota border posts to coordinate these operations and to hopefully avoid similar snafus to the embarrassing Kikagati episode.

Once in the DRC, they prepare for operations under the overall command of Kayumba Nyamwasa, and the MRCD’s “General” Laurent Ndagijimana alias Wilson Irategeka Lumbago – the so-called chief of defense forces of the rebel outfit who is a former officer in the genocidal ex FAR (Forces Armées Rwandais).

Senior Burundi officers visits to Kampala

Burundi’s senior security officers have often been visiting Kampala for joint planning purposes in their shared scheme to destabilize Rwanda.

Burundi’s Chief of Defense Forces (CDF), Gen. Prime Niyongabo, for instance, has been shuttling to Kampala where he has been holding meetings with Uganda’s top security officials, including President Museveni’s brother Salim Saleh, the de facto second-in-command of the military, as well as Abel Kandiho, the head of CMI. In previous meetings Niyongabo has also held meetings with the same officers, including the then Minister of Security Gen Henry Tumukunde, as well as Col Kaka Bagyenda, the head of Uganda’s Internal Security Organisation (ISO).

Sources similarly reveal that the head of Burundi’s intelligence services, the notorious SNR, Etienne “Steve” Ntakirutimana has also visited Kampala multiple times. On each such visit he was accorded the kind of reception – including being escorted by heavily armed CMI soldiers – befitting the suggestion that he is in fact an important visitor on a serious mission of shared interests.

Meanwhile, these groups have established food stores in Kakumiro district and Gayaza in Wakiso district in Uganda, where they have stockpiled tons of maize to sell and raise money for the logistics needed in the armed camps, including feeding the recruits.

While we may all tend to focus on the bizarre nature of the partnership among Museveni, Nkurunziza, Kayumba, and Rusesabagina, the appropriate and wise saying the governments in this unholy alliance should ponder is the one that warns: the evil you wish visited upon your neighbour may turn around and consume you instead!

This is a word to the wise in both Bujumbura and Kampala.

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