The past week saw 25 Museveni sponsored militias parade in a military courtroom in Kigali. These were Museveni’s Rwanda National Congress militias and P5 associates captured in East Congo after they were defeated on the battlefield. They were extradited to face trial in Rwanda for their terrorist enterprise.
The prosecutor, reading the charge sheet, confirmed several important facts about the terrorist enterprise that tried to implant itself in East Congo. Their plan was to set up bases in Congo and attack Rwanda from the Rwanda-Congo border. Crucially, however, this plan was and remains forged in Uganda. The militia – paraded recently- has a previous history with Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI). It’s relationship with CMI can be traced as far back as 2017 at the incident that took place at the Uganda-Tanzania Kikagati border.
RNC militias were intercepted in possession of fake Ugandan traveling documents on their way to Congo via an elaborate detour to Tanzania and Burundi. They were arrested by the Ugandan police but rescued by CMI which had issued them with the fake documents.
Amazingly, some of them still found their way to Congo only to be captured, extradited to face charges in Rwanda. CMI must now be holding its breath because the trial will certainly reveal embarrassing details of its direct involvement in facilitating an armed group whose aim is to destabilize Rwanda.
In the RNC and P5 maneuvers, the use of Congo as a launching pad serves key strategic objectives. Primarily, it hides the ‘Ugandaness’ origins of the plot to destabilize Rwanda. Moreover, with bases in Congo, the detour would ensure plausible deniability and possible retaliation against Uganda. Such a base also leads to instability that opens up smuggling routes to the vast minerals riches of DR Congo to Uganda’s corrupt elite including Museveni and Salim Saleh.
This scheme needs a ‘Nyamwasa in Congo’ scenario. Although Uganda’s militia operates under the RNC and P5 label, it receives Uganda state support in recruitment, training, arming, and deployment. If one considers that RNC and FDLR leaders use Ugandan passports to travel freely and that a number of them have access to President Yoweri Museveni, then the ownership of the destabilizing plot becomes clearer: it’s Museveni’s.
President Museveni has been ruling Uganda with an iron fist for the past 33 years so much so that nothing happens in Uganda without his approval. His rule is so enshrined that in reality, it is more of a family mafia with his wife, brothers, sisters, son, and daughters all occupying key positions in Uganda. The support to RNC and FDLR could not be possible without his personal approval. Moreover, no CMI or other officials in Uganda are ever sanctioned whenever they are caught actively supporting the terrorist enterprise. They know it’s Museveni’s militia.
The elaborate scheme to cover the ‘Ugandan’ link is nothing but an effort to hide Museveni’s personal hand in creating a militia. Museveni is aware that the Ugandan people and the region would not understand or support his plans to destabilize Rwanda. It is, therefore, Museveni that packages his plan as a Rwandan dissident plot based in Congo when all elements point to Kampala as the origin.
International law and precedence is clear, such acts of aggression – even when carried out by proxy – the responsibility befalls the sovereign state. The Ugandan traveling documents given to subversive groups are issued ‘in the name of the President of Uganda’ and more all support given to these groups by his security agencies is given in his name.
The only way left for Museveni to avoid full responsibility would be for him to disown those who act in his name and to do so by stopping the support he is providing them.
The 25 Museveni sponsored militia secured a court adjournment to seek legal assistance. Museveni should quickly complete his sponsorship program and fund their legal defense; after all, those on trial are members of his militia.