21 January 2019

Rwanda: Family of Abducted Rwandan Calls for His Immediate Release

Photo: New Times
Donne Rogers Kayibanda.

The family of a Rwandan citizen abducted by Ugandan security agencies has demanded for his immediate and unconditional release.

Rogers Donne Kayibanda was abducted in Uganda on January 10, 2019.

He has since not been accessed by any of his family members, according to his sister Julian Kayibanda.

She said that her brother's whereabouts are unknown since he was abducted from Ntinda, a Kampala suburb, by people believed to be agents of the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI), Uganda's military intelligence arm.

Julian Kayibanda was forced to hold back her tears as she narrated circumstances under which her brother was abducted in Uganda where he had gone to attend a civil wedding of his young brother, John Kayibanda.

She added that, if there is any illegality her brother may have committed, it should be brought forward before courts of law.

"We don't have any official information until now, we heard he was abducted but we do not know for what, where he is being incarcerated, we are in a dilemma... we're even not sure which health condition he is in... or even whether he is alive or dead," said Kayibanda.

Julian Kayibanda, a gender activist, also denied media reports that her brother could have been abducted on suspicion of being a Rwandan security operative.

"We heard from the media that Uganda claims my brother worked for Rwandan security agencies and that he was a soldier, this is all fabricated and therefore not true; I obviously know him well and we were all shocked to hear that," said Julian.

"For the avoidance of doubt, we can account for every iota of his academic and career life, he has never even worked for the Government," she said.

A friend to the detained Kayibanda also denied he has ever been a soldier, adding that such claims are aimed at covering up illegal detention and repeated harassment of Rwandans travelling to or through Uganda.

"That account is completely false and clearly mischief intended to misinform, cause disaffection and breach of fraternal connections between the peoples of both countries," said one Kalisa who knows Rogers Donne Kayibanda equally well and went to school with him.

We could not divulge his full name for fear of reprisal.

Since 2017 many Rwandans have reportedly been arrested, held incommunicado and tortured in Uganda. Some of those who have since been released have told of despicable treatment at the hands of people linked to the Ugandan military during their detention in 'safe houses' while many are still missing.

Besides Rogers Donne Kayibanda, the latest known victim is Moses Ishimwe Rutare who went missing on December 22, at around 12p.m, according to eyewitnesses.

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