UN links ex-Rwandan general Nyamwasa to rebels

Saturday January 05 2019

South African-based former Rwandan Lt Gen Kayumba Nyamwasa. He has been cited as recruiting for newly formed rebel group. PHOTO | AFP


A United Nations report has suggested that exiled former Rwandan general Kayumba Nyamwasa is recruiting fighters and getting ammunition from Burundi, Uganda and DR Congo.

The report by a UN Group of Experts, dated December 31, 2018, says that Gen Nyamwasa, who is exiled in South Africa, has frequently travelled in the region on a recruiting drive for his newly formed rebel group called P5, which is under the Rwanda National Congress (RNC).

P5 primarily operates in the South Kivu region of DRC, posing another threat to Rwanda in addition to the 24-year-old FDLR active in the same region, which has occasionally attacked Rwanda’s border towns.

Rwanda said it had engaged its neighbours to stop supporting rebel activities, but its pleas had fallen on deaf ears.

“The report confirms what Rwanda only knows. As you heard in the president’s New Year’s message, he called out RNC, the FDLR and countries in the region that have been offering them help,” Olivier Nduhungirehe, State Minister for East African Community Affairs, told The EastAfrican.

“We have engaged South Africa on the illegal travels of Kayumba, which are aimed at destabilising the peace of Rwanda and ultimately the region. But we have not yet got a response,” he added.


“We have good relations with South Africa and the leaders agreed to solve the diplomatic issues that have existed in the past. This P5 group is a rogue militia that is set up by people who have committed atrocities, and plans to conduct military attacks on Rwanda.”

Relations between Rwanda and South Africa have not been the same since 2014, after the killing of Rwanda’s former chief of intelligence Patrick Karegeya, who was found strangled in a hotel in Johannesburg, where he lived in exile.