By Alex Muhumuza
A Ugandan national, Charles Tusubira has, today 14 November been deported, and declared a prohibited immigrant by the Rwandan Directorate General of Immigration and Emigration.
According to reliable sources, Tusubira who has been running an advertising and branding company, Kleenville Media Ltd., was arrested in Kicukiro on 27 last month on suspicion of serious crimes against state security. Our sources did not further elaborate. But the Ugandan, according to eyewitnesses, was taken after being shown a proper arrest warrant that stated the reasons of his arrest.
Sections of Ugandan media including Chimpreports broke the story and peppered it with false claims. Outlets like Commandonepost – which like Chimpreports work with Ugandan intelligence services to disseminate anti-Rwanda propaganda – were quick to allege that “Rwandan officials wanted to grab Tusubira’s company.”
Commandonepost, a website run by one Bob Atwine, who is on the payroll of Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI) as part of a long-running propaganda campaign to tarnish or discredit Rwanda, claimed “Tusubira had been arrested and taken to an unknown place” and that he was being questioned “why he had not naturalized himself as a Rwandan citizen.”
A cursory inquiry will expose these claims to be completely false.
“First of all there is nothing like Tusubira being taken to an unknown place,” an informed source told Virunga Post. “Even the man’s wife was accorded her request to visit him; she found him well, and they talked. He was in as good a condition as when he was taken in to help with investigations.”
However, even Ugandan mainstream media tried to drum up alarmism on the case, with the state-owned New Vision this Wednesday claiming: “Tusubira was picked by men who identified themselves as immigration, and Rwanda police officers who came to his house early in the morning. He was pushed into one of the cars and has since never been seen.”
The paper further says the Ugandan High Commission in Rwanda had written to Rwanda’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but that it was “waiting for a response.”
More sources familiar with the matter, however, indicate that the Rwandan authorities indeed had written a Note Verbale to the Ugandan embassy confirming that Tusubira was detained and the reasons: serious crimes against state security.
Commentators reading Commandonepost’s allegations that Tusubira was in trouble because “Rwandan officials wanted to grab Tusubira’s company”, or that “he was targetted because he never took Rwandan nationality” laughed at what they called ludicrous fictions.
“If Commandonepost’s journalists wanted the truth they would step into Rwanda and see for themselves all the Ugandans running successful businesses here, in different sectors. There are Ugandans running big beer distribution businesses, others in IT, and many in informal sector,” remarked a social media commentator.
An official that requested not to be named said: “any law-abiding Ugandan, like all other nationalities, will never be in trouble in Rwanda.”
Tusubira was deported lawfully, and handed over to Ugandan authorities with proper paperwork.