By Alain Mucyo
In the run up to the Quadripartite Summit that took place on Sunday February 2, Ugandan government mouthpiece New Vision published a story titled; “Uganda has no issue with Rwanda, says government” in which quotes government spokesman Ofwono Opondo’s remarks on a local radio programme.
The article blatantly misleads the public by claiming that Ugandan and Rwandan officials “agreed on forming a joint verification team” with a mandate to scrutinize the accusations that each party has made against the other. “In December last year, Uganda and Rwanda agreed on the creation of a joint verification commission to help ascertain the litany of accusations and counter-accusations that are currently at the heart of their frosty relations,” reads part of the New Vision story.
This is misleading and quite dangerous and according to sources in the know, this could have been planted in the story in a calculated move to influence the outcome of the Luanda meeting. “President Museveni could have gone to Luanda with a view to blindside his colleagues (including facilitators) into agreeing to form this mechanism that Uganda was suggesting during the Kampala meeting in December, and which was rejected by the Rwandan delegation,’ said the source.
Nonetheless, the Luanda meeting on Sunday made no such resolution.
During the meeting in Kampala last December, the Ugandan delegation that was led by Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kutesa were pushing for this mechanism after Rwanda tabled her accusation against Uganda, with concrete evidence.
To this, the Rwandan delegation – which was led by State Minister of EAC Affairs, Olivier Nduhungirehe – refused, saying it was wastage of time and that the ad hoc commission was enough to look into these matters. All this played out in the public during a joint press conference that the two heads of delegation held after their meeting in Kampala.
In fact, contrary to the assertion by New Vision, there was no Joint Communiqué after the meeting, for reasons the Rwanda delegation stated clearly. They would not be dragged into making empty promises to citizens of both countries that there was progress in the engagements where there was not.
Following the stalemate, the two parties agreed to refer the matter to the Heads of State.
But, the question arises: why are Ugandan officials so obsessed with having this so-called joint verification mechanism? “The facts Rwanda has tabled to Uganda pointing to her acts of aggression are easily verifiable and need no further verification,” a security analyst pointed out.
Does it need “verification” that people are being tortured, when their wounds are visible daily in the media! “Also, take for instance the fact that Charlotte Mukankusi, “the head of diplomacy” of Kayumba Nyamwasa’s terrorist RNC who was issued a Ugandan passport – to be able to crisscross the world, fundraising for the terrorist group. Do you need a Joint Verification Mechanism to establish the veracity of this?
Mukankusi’s passport (number A000199979) for instance was published in the newspapers, and officials in the Ugandan immigration later confirmed it as authentic.
It requires no joint team to establish whether FDLR commanders LaForge Bazeye and Jean Pierre Nsekanabo (spokesperson and head of intelligence respectively) held a meeting with Frank Ntwari the RNC commissioner in Kampala Serena hotel towards the end of 2018?’ added the analyst, quipping that they should ask Ugandan State Minister for Regional Affairs Philemon Mateke.
Mateke was the convener of the meeting on behalf of President Museveni and personally took charge of the logistics especially for the two FDLR leaders who travelled to Kampala from DR Congo.
That Uganda has become a haven for terrorist groups and they work with state organs like CMI all are easily verifiable facts, including that the RNC “Commissioner for Capacity Development” disappeared in Uganda in September last year and has not been heard of ever since then. What was he doing there in the first place?
There are just so many things about the Ugandan regime’s anti-Rwanda activities that are proven beyond doubt – if one is interested in objective truths. One can add in the so-called RNC Uganda Province, whose “executive committee” was elected in September last year with the facilitation of Ugandan Military Intelligence, CMI.
The “RNC Uganda Province” is chaired by Deo Nyirigira who is also a known recruiter for the terrorist group using the cover of his Agape Church in Mbarara.
If Museveni and indeed Uganda are committed to restoring ties between both countries, they should commit to dismantling these, and the entire RNC network in Uganda including Rujugiro’s factory in Arua that is just a façade for RNC businesses in Uganda.
Put simply, Uganda just needs to take steps to cease being an operational base for terrorists plotting against Rwanda.
They need to do what their own leadership has once again said it commits itself to do, in the latest round of talks hosted by Angola yesterday, Sunday 2 February.