Uganda: Body of Ugandan National Shot in Rwanda Finally Repatriated

The body of a Ugandan businessman who was shot in Rwanda on August 18, was on Sunday evening repatriated through Katuna border in Kabale District.

The Rwandan authorities, however, did not show the exhibits to prove that the deceased was engaged in smuggling as earlier alleged.

Justus Kabagambe alias Kadogo 25, resident of Rutare Village, Bigaga Parish in Butanda Sub County, Kabale District was shot dead in at Kitovu Cell, Bukwasuri Parish in Burera District of Rwanda, about half a kilometre from the Uganda-Rwanda border line for allegedly smuggling crude waragi and some cosmetics.

The Mayor for Burera District, Ms Chantal Marie Uwanyirigira, led the Rwandan delegation that said that the deceased became aggressive after he was caught smuggling crude waragi thus prompting the security officers to shoot him.

"When he was arrested, he became aggressive and wanted to fight the Rwandan security officials that later shot him dead. Smuggling items from Uganda into Rwanda is an offence that Ugandans must desist from," Ms Uwanyirigira said.

The Rwandan authorities also handed over an 11-year-old boy, identified as Nohiri Mbesha, a resident of Butanda Sub County in Kabale District, whom they claimed was arrested in the same act of smuggling.

When asked about the exhibits to prove that the deceased was engaged in smuggling, the Rwandan security officials said that items got spoilt while the crude waragi spilled during the scuffle.

Mr Nelson Nshangabasheija, the Kabale District LCV chairman, who led the Ugandan delegation condemned the act of shooting and killing Ugandans accused of criminal acts "as if there are no other options" that the Rwandan authorities can use.

"There is no need for such hostilities because people in the border communities are relatives due to intermarriages. People in border communities should live in harmony other than being killed because they crossed the border line. It is my prayer that the presidents of the two countries resolve the issues that resulted in the closure of cross border businesses between Uganda and Rwanda," Mr Nshangabasheija said.

Kabagambe becomes the 6th Ugandan to be shot dead on allegations of smuggling goods from Uganda ever since Rwandan authorities closed cross border business with Uganda in March 2019.

The deceased is survived by a wife Ms Jane Tukahirwa, 25, and two children.

Kabale District authorities asked the relatives to immediately bury the body because it was already starting to decompose.

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