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Protestors gather for Ingabire, the woman who challenged Kagame

November 15, 2011

by Ann Garrison

“If there’s one person in the world that Kagame fears today, it is Victoire Ingabire. Because Kagame is a military man, he knows how to fight wars. So anybody who tries to go fight him militarily, Kagame’s ready for that. What he’s not ready for is an unarmed woman standing up and saying, ‘I’m here for democracy. I’m here for human rights. Please let these people be free.’” – Aimable Mugara on the Taylor Report, CIUT, 89.5FM,, Nov. 14, 2011

KPFA Weekend News broadcast Nov. 13, 2011


KPFA Weekend News Host: And turning now to Africa news, on Oct. 22 in the Netherlands, supporters of Rwandan opposition leader Victoire Ingabire gathered to celebrate her 43rd birthday. Next week, on Nov. 19, in Belgium, they’ll gather to protest her arrest and ongoing trial in Kigali, Rwanda.

Victoire Ingabire’s 43rd birthday party in the Netherlands included a slide show and update on her trial in Rwanda.
Ingabire has been in jail for over a year and her trial continues with almost no attention from the international press, even though she’s charged, most of all, with challenging the received history of the Rwanda Genocide. KPFA’s Ann Garrison has the story.

KPFA/Ann Garrison: Victoire Ingabire’s lawyers are not allowed to cross-examine her co-accuseds, even though they are also acting as witnesses against her. Since the prosecution’s allegations of terrorism are founded almost exclusively on the accounts of Ingabire’s co-accused, this means that her lawyers are not allowed to test the evidence.

As the youngest of Victoire Ingabire’s three children, Riszt Shimwa, stood by to blow out the candle and cut his mother’s birthday cake, Victoire’s husband, Lin Muyizere, told the crowd, gathered in Zevenhuizen, Netherlands, that “Victoire Ingabire is no longer ‘our Ingabire.’ She is now a member of a much larger family, your family. This is the reason why we couldn’t have celebrated her day without having you here with us.”
Rwanda Genocide survivor and human rights activist Aimable Mugara, writing in the San Francisco Bay View newspaper, called Ingabire’s trial a stark reminder of the show trials that took place in the Soviet Union from 1936 to 1939. Today he spoke to KPFA from his home in Toronto.

Aimable Mugara: In the case of Ingabire today, the verdict is already out there. Gen. Kagame has made it clear that he thinks she’s guilty and, at this stage, I do not believe there’s a judge in Rwanda that could stand up to Kagame’s wishes, which is just to lock up Victoire Ingabire, not because of anything that she did, but simply because she would pose a political challenge.

KPFA: Mugara also wrote that Kagame seemed to think she should be glad she had any sort of trial in Rwanda, considering what happens to others who’ve challenged President Kagame.

Aimable Mugara: Ingabire’s defense submitted those written questions this past week, and then the first co-accused who was responding to those questions … one of the questions that had been submitted to him, ahead of time so he had time to prepare, was: “So you were jailed by the Rwandan government a while back, and you never said anything about Ingabire until seven months into your jail sentence, a few days after the arrest of Ingabire.

Aimable Mugara, Rwanda Genocide survivor and human rights activist
“So if you had all this information, how come you never gave it at the beginning and it took the arrest of Ingabire for you to come forward?” And his rehearsed response was, “I don’t know. Please ask the prosecutor.” And the prosecutor never responded to that question.

KPFA: Aimable Mugara’s essay, “Rwanda: Please go quietly off to jail, Madame Victoire Ingabire“ can be found on the website of the San Francisco Bay View,

KPFA/Ann Garrison: For Pacifica, KPFA and AfrobeatRadio, I’m Ann Garrison.

San Francisco writer Ann Garrison writes for the San Francisco Bay View, Global Research, Colored Opinions, Black Star News, the Newsline EA (East Africa) and her own blog, Ann Garrison, and produces for AfrobeatRadio on WBAI-NYC, Weekend News on KPFA and her own YouTube Channel, AnnieGetYourGang. She can be reached at

Victoire Our Hero Slideshow: Victoire’s trip to Kigali, Rwanda was created by TripAdvisor. See another Kigali slideshow. Create your own stunning free slideshow from your travel photos.


13 thoughts on “Protestors gather for Ingabire, the woman who challenged Kagame

  1. Lily

    Who challenged who? Do n't insult an elected president. Rwandans more than 90% have chosen him to guide them towards achieving their vision. Whom does that lady represent to be at his level? Kagame is a Head of State my friend. Ingabire is not represinting rwandans at my knowledge. She is only representing Hutu extremists who have hard to imagine a Rwanda leaded by a Tutsi. His own crim is to have who chased away killers and prevented them to exterminate Tutsi. He is now leading his country towards a brillant future where we learn to live as brothers, where we learn that ethnic divisions do not help us at all while they destroy us as human beings. The past has been our teacher, we are now masters of our destiny.

    1. Ann_Garrison

      More than 90% is not a plausible outcome in any truly pluralist democracy. And none of the real opposition candidates, Habineza, Ntaganda, and Ingabire, were allowed to run.

  2. Selina

    I got a ? if anyone will answer your celebrating Victoria Ingabire in an continent and country ( Netherlands)

    Who's the enemy of your state who responsible for your colonalism, the choas in your country

    Why?, why not be in another part of Africa????

  3. Aimable

    Ann Garisson we are fade up you involving yourself with stupid allegations and wrong information allover. Have you heard the Government of Holland is sending independent evidence about Ingabire’s cases dealing with terrorist groups….for a fair judgement. Whatever you do, Rwandan know what is right to do! where is the demonstration and for what anyways!!!

  4. Fr Rw

    This is just ridiculous and deserves contempt. Could this fellow deny Jewish holocoast in West? or using western press? Rwanda of today is not Rwanda of yesteryear. Why didn't all those mouthpieces utter any word when Tustis were slaughtered right and left? These are sadists that become angry whenever they see progress unfolding in a land of a thousand hills. Big up People of Rwanda and HE. PK.

    1. Aimable

      Fr Rw, just so you know a Jewish survivors organization, the Lantos Foundation just gave Paul Rusesabagina, the hero of the movie Hotel Rwanda an award. The award was given to him despite General Kagame and his clique protesting as loudly as they could. So, even holocaust survivors are slowly getting to know General Kagame's true colors.

  5. Seamus

    The Hutu Power movement has been gaining steam for some years. It doesn't appear to have reach popular levels yet though. I think genocide denial must be taken very seriously. The genocide against Tutsi and Hutu moderates was not so long ago and there is a long history of Hutu-on-Tutsi massacres.

    Thanks for your time.

    1. Aimable

      Seamus, the problem in Rwanda is not Hutu vs Tutsil The problem in Rwanda is mass murderers vs innocent civilians. The mass murderers are both extremist Tutsis and extremist Hutus. The innocent civilians are both moderate Hutus and moderate Tutsis. Wake up! Even the United Nations finally woke up with last year's United Nations Mapping Report on DRC where it documented extremist Tutsis committing genocide against innocent unarmed Hutu children, women, sick, elderly in what it classified as possible genocide.

  6. Dunia

    Dear Ingabire, My heart is with you and I pray for you and your family to stay strong in the mouth of the Lion, Kagame who is the killer of all the times. This is the trial between you Ingabire ,the innocent woman, the victim of democracy and the oppressor (kagame)and I hope God is on your side.

  7. Mignon

    Ann Garrison Bitch,whore,witch,Aimable Mugara,Genocide survivor?Oh please…imbwa yinterahamwe gusa…i can see you have upped the momentum you damn Genocidaires…here in Oklahoma,you know we cant stand your lies…Kagame Oyeee…


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