7 December 2011

Rwandan journalist shot dead in Kampala, Uganda


Charles Ingabire, the Rwandan exiled editor of the online publication
Charles Ingabire, the Rwandan exiled editor of the online publication "Inyenyeri", was shot dead by one or more unknown gunmen in a vehicle at a bar in Kampala, Uganda
Umuvugizi.com

This is available in:

English Français Español
Charles Ingabire, the Rwandan exiled editor of the online publication "Inyenyeri", was shot dead by one or more unknown gunmen in a vehicle at a bar in Kampala, Uganda on 30 November, report the Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda) and other IFEX members. As "Inyeyeri" is highly critical of Rwandan President Paul Kagame, it is believed the early morning shooting - which killed Ingabire instantly - was carried out as a punishment for Ingabire's writings.

According to Human Rights Watch and the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), local journalists say Ingabire was attacked in the past, when unknown individuals took his laptop and warned him to shut down the website. Rwandan spies are frequently dispatched to follow political opponents north of the border, adds Human Rights Watch.

According to HRNJ-Uganda, police are investigating the case by questioning a security guard and bartender who may have been involved in the crime. Police recovered five sub-machine gun cartridges at the scene.\

"It's unfortunate that attacks aiming to silence critical voices are spreading beyond Rwanda and the gunmen continue to be unknown," said Geoffrey Wokulira Ssebaggala of HRNJ-Uganda.

Ingabire fled Rwanda for Uganda in 2007 due to political persecution, according to his colleagues. The Rwandan government claims, however, that Ingabire was convicted for embezzlement and escaped jail, reports the International Press Institute (IPI).

HRNJ-Uganda points out that just one and a half years ago, another Rwandan journalist, Jean-Leonard Rugambage, was assassinated in a similar style. The editor of the private tabloid "Umuvugizi" was shot dead by unknown gunmen outside his Kigali home in June 2010.

This latest killing follows a long pattern of harsh repression against independent journalists, civil society representatives and opposition politicians in Rwanda, says Human Rights Watch.

Due to past failings of the Ugandan government to transparently investigate such murders, HRNJ-Uganda urged the government of Uganda to involve Interpol in the case.

Indeed, numerous incidents in Uganda show that while government officials aren't as ruthlessly targeting journalists as their southerly neighbour, the Ugandan government's animosity toward press freedom has led to impunity for those who kill journalists. ARTICLE 19 points out that there have been several cases of journalists killed in Uganda in recent years. Many others have been shot at and injured by security forces in the past year.

Putting free expression issues in perspective.

Sign up to receive IFEX In Context.

 
More from Uganda
  • Freedom on the Net 2017: Uganda

    The 2011 Computer Misuse Act was used to arrest and charge individuals with “offensive communications” for criticizing the president in two separate incidents

  • Freedom of the Press 2016: Uganda

    The broadcast regulator attempted to block the appearance of a controversial political personality at several media outlets, and ordered a radio station to cease negative coverage of a local royal family.

  • Freedom on the Net 2015: Uganda

    LGBTI community a frequent target of intimidation, threats of violence and technical attacks online


At this point, would publish: "Home page"
 
IFEX is a global network of committed organisations working to defend and promote free expression.
Permission is granted for material on this website to be reproduced or republished in whole or in part provided the source member and/or IFEX is cited with a link to the original item.