Rwanda: Former Minister Uwizeyimana Could Face Assault Charges

15 February 2020

The National Public Prosecution Authority (NPPA) has said that it is analysing the dossier on Evode Uwizeyimana, former Minister of State in charge of Constitutional and Legal Affairs, which involves 'unintentional bodily harm' charge.

The dossier was submitted by the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB).

RIB Spokesperson, Marie Michelle Umuhoza told The New Times that after investigating Uwizeyimana's case, it submitted his dossier to the prosecution. However, she clarified that he was not under arrest.

"The dossier is no longer in our jurisdiction. It is in the hands of the prosecution," she said.

"We received his (Uwizeyimana's) dossier on February 7, and we are studying it to determine whether to file charges or not," Faustin Nkusi, NPPA spokesperson told The New Times.

On February 3, 2020, Uwizeyimana was criticised on social media for allegedly assaulting a female security guard at Grand pension plaza building.

An eyewitness reported that, during the incident, Uwizeyimana declined to walk through a metal detector as is required of members of the public before accessing public buildings. This was despite the security guards' request.

He indicated that, normally, the decision on a dossier should be made within six months.

On February 6, Uwizeyimana resigned from his position.

Generally, Nkusi said that the charge pressed against Uwizeyimana is unintentional bodily harm, which is provided for in article 118 of the law Determining Offences and Penalties in General, which was enacted in 2018.

Unintentional bodily harm entails that any person who, through carelessness, inattention, negligence, lack of precaution and foresight, causes bodily harm to another person but without any intention of endangering his/her life commits an offence.

Upon conviction, the offender is liable to imprisonment for a term of at least three months and not more than six months and a fine of at least Rwf500,000 and not more than one million Rwandan francs Rwf1,000,000) or only one of these penalties.

If the offence referred to under Paragraph One of this Article results in death, the penalty is imprisonment for a term of six months and not more than two years and a fine of at least five hundred Rwandan francs Rwf500,000 and not more than two million Rwandan francs Rwf2,000,000, or only one of these penalties.

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