Rwanda’s Kagame, keynote speaker at a Sac State genocide conference?

Join the protest Thursday, Nov. 3, 9 a.m., outside the Redwood Room, Sacramento State University campus, 6000 J St., Sacramento

by Ann Garrison

KPFA Weekend News broadcast Oct. 29, 2011

Transcript

KPFA Weekend News Host: Congolese and Rwandans gathered to demonstrate against Rwandan President Paul Kagame’s appearance at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Perth, Australia, yesterday [Oct. 28]. The Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported that some of the most vocal protestors were a group of Africans from Congo calling Kagame the Hitler of Africa and demanding to know why he had been allowed to attend the gathering after killing more than 8 million Congolese people within 10 years.

Kagame will be traveling to Northern California this week to give a keynote speech on Thursday, Nov. 3, at a conference on genocide at Sacramento State University. KPFA’s Ann Garrison has the story.

KPFA/Ann Garrison: Many leading scholars and human rights investigators, genocide survivors and now Kagame’s own former Chief of Staff Theogene Rudasingwa hold him most responsible for the Rwanda Genocide of the 1990s, for the ensuing Congo Wars and Congo conflict, and for the plunder of Eastern Congo’s vast natural resource wealth. Sacramento State University’s invitation to Kagame to give the keynote speech at a genocide conference has caused many to ask what Sacramento State and its California State university system partners in the conference can possibly be thinking.

Mimi Mandiangu, president of the Northern California Congolese Congress, otherwise known as the Inga Association, explained why Congolese activists plan to gather at Sacramento State University in Sacramento to protest Kagame’s appearance:

Mimi Mandiangu: We just want to stop him keep telling lies about the genocide. The U.N. already did a report. People need to read this report, to see what he did, the killing of our women, children and men. They keep killing in our country and we just want to know that people know that he is a killer. And we need to stop him lying in this conference. So we’re going to be there to try to stop him, stop saying lies, and we’re going to bring posters and we’re going to talk more when we’re there.

KPFA: The U.N. report that Mimi Mandiangu refers to is the “U.N. Mapping Report on Human Rights Abuse in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, 1993 – 2003,” which was leaked on Aug. 26, 2010, and officially released on Oct. 1, 2010. The report documents war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocidal massacres of Rwandan Hutu refugees and Congolese Hutus committed by Kagame’s Rwandan Patriotic Army in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The Northern California Congolese Congress are asking any and all peace and justice activists to join their protest outside the Redwood Room on the Sacramento State University campus, at 6000 J St., Sacramento, beginning at 9 a.m. on Thursday morning, Nov. 3.

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 ann@afrobeatradio.com.