HomeOp-edUgandan Intelligence, and its propaganda manufacture crisis after unruly Ugandan soldier strays...

Ugandan Intelligence, and its propaganda manufacture crisis after unruly Ugandan soldier strays into Rwanda

By Jean Gatera

Rwandan military authorities hand over Ugandan soldier, Pte. Bakuru Muhuba (center with a bald head) to the RDC of Uganda’s Kisoro District. Kampala outlets of misinformation have been trying to smear Rwanda with falsehoods that RDF “abducted Muhuba”.

When Private Bakuru Muhuba of the Uganda People Defense Force (UPDF) strayed into Rwandan territory over the past weekend, there was an avalanche of Kampala propaganda attacking Rwanda with claims that “Rwanda had abducted a Ugandan soldier.”

It all looked coordinated, down to the language or terminology that the websites, blog sites, or social media accounts known to be outlets of Ugandan intelligence misinformation were using. 

The Ugandan soldier was intercepted by a Rwanda Defense Force patrol on Saturday, 12 June.

A statement RDF released on the incident, yesterday, Sunday 13, said: “On 12 June 21, at approximately 14:45 hrs. an RDF day patrol intercepted the UPDF soldier on Rwandan soil.” That was in Majyambere village in the Cyanika Sector of Burera District, Northern Province.

The RDF statement described Pte. Muhuba as being dressed in a UPDF camouflage uniform, armed with a Medium Machine Gun (MMG) with its 100 rounds, 01 Binocular, 01 cellphone, and his military Identification documents.

Rwanda would hand Uganda’s soldier back to them, safe, and together with all his equipment and weapon.

But well before any facts on the case came to light Kampala propagandists were in full flight, with misinformation that “Rwandan forces had crossed into Uganda ‘to abduct’ the Ugandan soldier,” embellished in various ways to paint a situation as if Rwandan troops have a brief “to kidnap soldiers in Uganda.” 

At the forefront of the misinformation attacks were notorious websites of misinformation run by Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence. These were Commandonepost, which is edited by one Bob Atwine, and Chimpreports of Giles Muhame – who has in the past published outright fictions such as the one in April 2019 that “Rwandan soldiers crossed to Kisoro looking for food and drink.” Following suit was Kampala Post which is affiliated to Special Forces Command, and is managed under the office of Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba.

These were being echoed, word for word, by anti-Rwanda Facebook trolls like Obed Katureebe, a megaphone for Kayumba Nyamwasa’s RNC propaganda who is based in the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC), and who goes by the pseudonym “RPF Gakwerere”, as well as others like Sulah Nuwamanya the RNC Kampala resident agent, and others.

They were clamoring with their fictitious “kidnap story” of the UPDF soldier that “had been taken with all his documents.” They claimed that “Pte. Muhuba was patrolling with his colleague but left his patrol to ‘ease himself’ when he disappeared.” That was how they built the story that “Rwandan soldiers crossed the border to ambush and kidnap him.” 

But as usual the story was a complete fabrication. “They were merely manufacturing a crisis, for their own reason,” said a security official in Kigali. Another observer, an experienced commentator on issues since the Museveni government embarked on its policy of hostility against Rwanda said that CMI was manufacturing this crisis for purposes of provocation.

When the full facts came out, it was disclosed that the Ugandan soldier had said he got lost and found himself in Rwanda. When RDF intercepted him, he acknowledged that he was on Rwandan territory. “I am sorry, let me go back to Uganda”, Muhuba is said to have pleaded with members of the RDF patrol.

The fiction woven by the CMI propaganda machine continued to unravel when a Ugandan delegation, led by the Kisoro RDC Capt. (Rtd) Peter Mugisha, came to receive the stray soldier and apologized to Rwanda in the process. In a news bulletin on Rwanda Broadcasting Agency (RBA), the Kisoro RDC blamed Pte. Muhuba’s straying into Rwandan territory and admonished him to “use GPS next time.”

By the time Muhuba was being handed back to Uganda, the CMI lie machine was already spinning a new fiction: that “Kigali had done so because of pressure from Uganda.”

They are indefatigable, shame-proof liars, laughed a Rwandan social media account.  

1 COMMENT

  1. But what is the issue with Rwanda and Uganda?? So many Rwandans are living and working in Uganda peacefully including M7 whom we have tolerated as one of your own and we go on with our lives peacefully. I would encourage Rwandans to continue treating Ugandans as brothers and sisters and leave the politicians to squeeze their necks there. I would like to call a boxing match between a young Kagame and the aged M7 and whoever wins should be congratulated. We need a peaceful neighborhood minus this blah blah which brings suffering to the innocent wanainchi. Economically Rwanda is small but well organized compared to the wasteful regime across the border fueled by high corruption and greed of Tibuhaburwa.

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