Politics

Kagame’s Critics Paying Lobbyists To Smear His Government Before US Congress

Two of Rwanda’s staunch critics, David Himbara and Robert Higiro, have succeeded in lobbying for a hearing before US Congressman Chris Smith.

Through a Washington based lobbying and public affairs firm, The Podesta Group, Himbara and Higiro, had their case heard this Wednesday, before the chair of House foreign affairs subcommittee on Africa, Chris Smith.

From September 2014 to July this year, businessman Tribert Rujugiro Ayabatwa through Himbara, paid  $440,000 to the lobby firm, to secure access to the Chair of the House Panel on Africa.

The lobby firm has also produced a promotional video of businessman, Tribert Rujugiro, that was to be aired on selected US media houses and appear on the firm’s website.

These projects are meant to discredit President Kagame and his government.

The trio have been trash-talking President Kagame and his government, around the world. Not that Rujugiro has cases of tax evasion in Rwanda. He was also in 2008 arrested in UK over tax evasion cases.

He was also wanted on same charge in South Africa with his cigarette factory.He was released after paying  a $7.1m (£4.6m) fine to the UK tax authority.

Meanwhile, Himbara and Higiro, appeared in the second panel hearing, alongside Mike Jobbins, Manager, Africa Programs, Search for Common ground, and Adotel Akwel, MD for Government relations, Amnesty International, US.

This is the second time two have appeared before congress.

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