KIGALI/KAMPALA – Rwandan president Paul Kagame says he knows the individuals who are plotting all kinds of things against the tiny East African country to solicit support from Uganda against his government.
Mr. Kagame made the remarks recently during an interview with Nation Media Group (NMG), where he also addressed a number of issues ─ ranging from his achievements at the African Union, his agenda as the new chairperson of the East African Community to relations with S. Africa and Burundi, to the never-ending tensions with Uganda.
Mr. Kagame acknowledged without mentioning names that indeed, the bad blood with Uganda is fueled by Rwandan dissidents in South Africa who give certain information to them in order to drive a wedge between them for their own advantage.
He stated: “Some of the things that are said [and] believed by Uganda about us are coming from these individuals living in South Africa…these individuals in South Africa [are] plotting all kinds of things against us are the ones giving information to Uganda in a way to solicit support from Uganda against us…the information is designed to create that problem from which they benefit if Uganda believes in some of these things.”
Whereas Kagame didn’t name the “individuals”, his government and the recent United Nations report accuse the exiled Gen Kayumba Nyamwasa who is the head of the outside-based Rwanda National Congress to be behind subversive activities against the Kagame government.
According to a December United Nations report, Gen Nyamwasa is becoming a big threat to Rwanda as he is recruiting fighters and gathering ammunition from Burundi, Uganda and DR Congo.
The December 31, 2018 report indicates that Gen Nyamwasa, a South Africa exiled ex-Rwandan soldier has frequently travelled in the region on a recruiting drive for his newly formed P5 rebel group which is under the Rwanda National Congress (RNC).
P5 primarily operates in the South Kivu region of DRC, posing another threat to Rwanda in addition to the 24-year-old FDLR active in the same region, which has occasionally attacked Rwanda’s border towns.
Ms. Olivier Nduhungirehe, the Rwanda State Minister for East African Community Affairs said that the country had engaged its neighbours to stop supporting rebel activities, but its pleas had fallen on deaf ears.
Kigali accuses Kampala of backing Rwandan dissidents seeking to destabilise Rwanda while Uganda, on the other hand, intensified its crackdown on Rwandans it says are on espionage missions in Uganda.
Uganda’s relations with Rwanda has been on the rocks in the recent past, with former Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura battling claims of illegally deporting Rwandan nationals who were seeking asylum in the country.
A number of families in Rwanda also claim their relatives routinely being abducted by Uganda’s CMI and other security forces.
Whereas the earlier tension between the two neighbouring countries was defused following a meeting between President Museveni and his Rwanda counterpart Paul Kagame on March 25 last year in Kampala, tensions have remained.
Uganda accuses Kigali of deploying spies in the country and infiltrating security organs. Uganda, on the other hand, intensified its crackdown on Rwandans it says are on espionage missions in Uganda.
The Rwandan High Commissioner to Uganda, Maj Gen (Rtd) Frank Mugambage, also claimed that the Kampala government has failed to investigate terror groups working within Uganda with plans to attack Rwanda.
Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kutesa, during his visit to Rwanda recently, is said to have delivered a response from Museveni to Kagame regarding the “problems” Kigali raised with Kampala.