KIGALI – Rwanda National Police has said they shot dead two Ugandans at their border because the duo became violent and assaulted police officers.
In a statement issued on Sunday evening, JB Kabera, the Rwanda Police Spokesman, said their officers on patrol intercepted a group of suspected smugglers who crossed inside Rwandan territory at an ungazetted border point with Uganda.
“Today, November 10, 2019 at around 0300 AM in Tabagwe Sector, Nyagatare District, Police officers on patrol intercepted a group of suspected smugglers who crossed inside Rwandan territory at an ungazetted border point with Uganda. The smugglers became violent and assaulted police officers who reacted in self-defense shooting dead two while the rest escaped. The deceased were identified as lob Ebinclishanga, 32 and Bosco Tuheirwe 35, both Ugandans,” he said.
“An investigation into this incident has started. Rwanda National Police condemns violent behavior by smugglers and urges the public, especially those residing along the common border to focus on legal commercial activities using official border points,” he added.
Kigezi region police spokesperson Elly Maate identified the deceased as Job Ebyarishanga and Bosco Tuheirwe, both residents of Nyakabungo village in Kyabuhangwa parish, Kamwezi Sub County.
“It’s alleged that on 9/11/2019 at around 20:00 hours at Tabagwe village in Nyagatare district in Rwanda two Ugandans were shot dead by Rwandese security forces on allegation that they were smuggling tobacco into Rwanda which is prohibited in the country,” Mr Maate said in a statement.
“We are compiling information about the whole incident,” he said, adding that the case has been recorded at Mpororo Police Post under file number SD03/10/11/2019.
The Kamwezi sub-county chairman, Mr Tedson Niwagaba, said he had contacted the authorities in Nyagatare in Rwanda where the deceased were killed from, to have their bodies handed over to the relatives.
Rwanda police later released a statement on Sunday evening, explaining that they found the Ugandans smuggling and when they confronted the police officers who shot in self defence.
This is not the fight time Ugandan and Rwandan nationals are being shot by security agencies near the Rwandan border over alleged smuggling of goods into their territory.
On November 4, 2019 a Rwandan national Jean Piere Havugimana, 28, was shot and injured by Rwandan security personnel on the left shoulder inside Rwanda about 300 meters away from the international boundary with Uganda as he tried to smuggle about 50Kgs of Irish potato from Uganda.
On May 24, 2019, Alex Nyesiga a resident of the same village and a Rwandan national John Batista Kyerengye, were shot and killed by Rwandan security personnel inside Rwanda has they allegedly smuggled a bale of second hand clothes into their country through Habusavu porous border entry.