Outgoing francophie boss, Paul Kagame in war of words

President Paul Kagame. Photo : Reuters

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (ADV) – Michaelle Jean, the Secretary general of Francophonie, and the Rwandan President Paul Kagame are hooked up in a war of words.

Ms. Jean sparked off the war recently when she tweeted calling on the international community to be mindful about the ongoing trial of Diane, Rwigara – a Rwandan woman opposition politician with a strong dissention to President Kagamé.

Ms. Jean who has been toasted for her stance against impunity and the imperative for dynamic and transparent leadership in Africa, expressed apprehension over the fairness of Diane’s trial.

For Ms. Jean, the trial of Diane is one “against the freedom of expression”.

Kagame believes Ms. Jean was carrying out a blackmail campaign against his government because she lost a second term bid to the Francophonie to Kagame’s candidate, Rwandan former foreign minister Louis Mushikiwabo.

But in a reaction on Monday in Paris to Ms. Jean’s utterances, President Kagame retorted that “Our judicial system operates freely, adding, everyone should know that.

International human rights activists are ostensibly not convinced by such argument especially when Rwandan prosecutors have demanded a 22 year-jail for Diane for “instigating insurgency and falsifying documents.”

A Rwandan election commission had accused Diane of falsifying documents she submitted to back her presidential bid in 2017.

The prosecutors want Rwigara jailed for fifteen years for inciting insurgency and seven years for falsifying documents.

Diane lost her presidential bid to Kagame during the 2017 polls.

Her fate will be determined on December 6 by a panel of three judges.

© Bur-csa – A.H – Oumaima Mourtada / From our regional correspondent Tamba Jean-Matthew III – African Daily Voice (ADV)