By Patience Kirabo
Ugandan websites such as The Independent and Commandonepost have given prominence to reports that “a panel of three Judges in the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) that was hearing Steven Kalali’s case has questioned the honesty of Rwanda’s government.” Kalali is reported to be a Ugandan lawyer that sued Rwanda allegedly for closing its borders.
Websites like Commandonepost are known to be financed by Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military intelligence (CMI) in an ongoing propaganda war against Rwanda. They are known to publish stories against Rwanda with no facts to back them up, such as the claim that it is Rwanda that closed the border, though it is Uganda through its security agencies harassment of Rwandan nationals in the form of illegal arrests, and illegal incarceration incommunicado and torture that led to closure of the border. The Independent is known to belong to Museveni’s advisor and propagandist, Andrew Mwenda.
Commandonepost proceeds with claims that “the actions of Rwanda by closing its border have infringed on the rights and freedoms of its people, and those in neighboring countries.” Observers, however, know that contrary to claims like this, the rights of Rwandan nationals traveling, working, studying, and residents in Uganda were violated in so many ways through abuses inflicted by the likes of CMI itself, and other Kampala security organs.
“How can we disregard how movements of Rwandans in Uganda were constrained through all the harassment, and inhuman dumping of tortured Rwandans at the borders?” asked a reader.
The rights and freedom of Rwandans were infringed since 2017 when Rwandans and Ugandans of Rwandan descent were persecuted in every corner of Uganda although the EAC protocol stipulates that they should not be detained provided they are citizens of a member state with proof of their nationality by a national ID or other forms of travel documents.
Obviously when Kalali went to sue Rwanda in the EACJ, he might be thinking that the court would merely disregard all the abuses and injustices that Rwandans, citizens of an EAC state, have suffered in Uganda, but it doesn’t work like that, said a social media account.
The harassment and torture of her citizens prompted the government of Rwanda to advise her citizens from going to Uganda because their safety and security were not guaranteed once there.
“Commandpost or The Independent and others should let the courts do their job, and desist from injecting their biased commentary in the proceedings,” said an observer that read their articles.