The New Times (Kigali)

Rwanda: Key Suspect in Dr. Mbukani Murder Case Pleads Guilty

Photo: Leadership
Rajab Mbukani's body was found hanging on a tree.

The key suspect in the murder of National University of Rwanda Medicine lecturer Rajab Mbukani has pleaded guilty.

Louise Marie Muhire, 28, the deceased's wife, was arrested following a confession of two persons she allegedly hired to do the bloody job.

She was yesterday arraigned for pre-detention hearing at the Nyarugenge Intermediate Court together with Jean Paul Cyuma, 32, a cobbler who confessed to have been paid to kill Dr. Mbukani, and his accomplice, Vital Hagenimana, a.k.a., Nyambo.

The trio was charged together with Muhire's elder sister, Clarisse Tuyisenge.

The presiding judge read charges of murder and conspiracy to murder to the suspects, who could not enter into plea bargain as it was only a pre-trial.

Fifth suspect held

The Police previously paraded four suspects, but yesterday, a fifth suspected was introduced to the quartet.

Police said the new suspect was arrested for connecting the driver, who transported the doctor's body to a forest in Kanyinya. The driver is still at large and investigations are still ongoing, according to police.

"After pleading guilty, the prosecution asked the judge to remand the suspects for 30 days on grounds that they are accused of committing a serious crime," Alain Mukularinda, the prosecution spokesman, told this newspaper.

According to previous testimonies, Cyuma alleged that Muhire contracted them to kill the doctor on December 29 last year.

Muhire, however, denied arranging the murder of her husband, saying she had no contact with the two confessed killers. However, before the judge yesterday, she pleaded guilty.

Muhire and the fifth suspect were represented by their lawyers, while the other three, including her sister, chose to have no legal representation.

The court will pronounce its decision at 9a.m. today.

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InFocus

Rwandan Lecturer's Murder Suspects Jailed

Rajab Mbukani's body was found hanging on a tree.

A court has overruled a bail plea by suspects in the murder of former university lecturer Rajab Mbukani, and has ordered that they be imprisoned for 30 days. Read more »