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Nine Arrested Over Forged Driver’s Licenses

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Rwanda National Police (RNP), on Friday, April 16, paraded nine people at Kigali Metropolitan Police headquarters in Remera, who were arrested in the operations against people forging and using fake driver’s licenses.

The suspects include six men, who were forging and selling driver’s licenses as well as three drivers and motorcyclists, who were using forged permits.

Some of those caught with forged driver’s license paid between Frw400,000 and Frw550,000 to acquire the fake permits.

By law, one has to pay only Frw50,000 for a definitive driver’s license. 

Some of the paraded suspects who were masquerading as Police officers attached to the Traffic and Road Safety department within the Rwanda National Police.

Epimaque Bimenyayabo, a resident in Gicumbi District, is one of those arrested with a forged permit.

He argued that after failing practical tests several times, he was tricked to believe that he can buy one.

Epimaque Bimenyayabo arrested with a forged permit: “Someone told me to pay Frw550,000 after assuring me that I will get a valid driver’s license. I sold my cow, paid the money little did I know that I was paying for a forged permit. I was arrested when I went to Police to report the theft of my motorcycle,” Bimenyayabo said.

Jean Baptiste Nsabimana: Also arrested in Muko Sector, Gicumbi District is one Jean Baptiste Nsabimana, who had paid Frw150, 000 for a forged provisional permit.

Normally, a provisional permit cost only Frw10,000.

Nsabimana said that he was supposed to pay Frw400, 000 for both provisional and definitive driver’s license.

He accused one Maniriho (also arrested) of knowingly selling him a forged permit.

“Maniriho was my friend, at least I thought I was paying for something genuine. I was supposed to pay Frw400000 in total but I first gave him Frw150000 as advance payment. Later on April 12, he came back with another man, who was guising as a Police officer and told me that my provisional permit was out and that I should pay the remaining balance to have both the provisional and definitive permits,” Nsabimana narrated.

Nsabimana was arrested as he came to pick his permit from the Police impersonator, whom, by that time, was already in the Police custody.

Meanwhile, Eric Kayiranga had been masquerading as a Police officer in the racket.

Kayiranga is an instructor at one of the driving schools in Kigali.

RNP spokesperson, Commissioner of Police (CP) John Bosco Kabera advised people to seek lawful businesses and to go through legal channels instead of taking criminal shortcuts and ending up spending many years in prison.

“We have previously arrested many people in these criminal activities and warned against the same; here we are today with other people, who turned a deaf ear. Everyone engaged in these criminal acts, either selling forgeries or using forged permit will be arrested in one way or another,” CP Kabera warned.

“As usual, when Police gets information on any suspected criminal practice, we follow up and that is how this specific group was unearthed after it emerged that they were producing fake driver’s licenses and selling them to people, who thought they were dealing with Police officers and who were convinced that they would get the licenses through such criminal shortcuts,” CP Kabera said.

“The arrrested suspects will be handed over to Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) for further legal process.”

Reference to The Law

Under law No 68/2018 of 30/08/2018 determining offenses and penalties states that, any person who, by deception, obtains another person’s property, whole or part of his/her finance by use of false names or qualifications, or who offers positive promises or who threatens of future misfortunes, commits an offence.  

Upon conviction, he/she is liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than two years and not more than three years, and a fine of not less than Frw3 million but not more than Frw5 million.

Article 276 of the same law states that any person who, with fraudulent intention, produces a false written document, causes to write false statements or produces a conflicting declaration, is considered to commit the offence of forgery. 

Upon conviction, he/she is liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than five years but not more than seven years and a fine of not less than Frw3 million but not more than Frw5 million or only one of these penalties.

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CHOGM 2021 Postponed Due To COVID-19 Pandemic

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Paul Kagame and Commonwealth Secretary-General, Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland QC are expected to officially announce the postponement of CHOGM 2021 as a result of the continuing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.  

President Kagame said in a statement that having reviewed all available evidence and risk assessments, and after close consultation between the Commonwealth Secretariat and Member States, the decision has been made to postpone the CHOGM in Kigali for a second time. 

The decision to postpone CHOGM for a second time has not been taken lightly, the statement said. 

“The health and welfare of all Commonwealth citizens at this critical time must take precedence. We look forward to welcoming the Commonwealth family to Kigali for CHOGM at the appropriate time,” Kagame said.

The Cmmonwealth Secretary-General is queues saying that, “We know that the COVID-19 pandemic is continuing to have a hugely damaging impact on our member countries, many of whom continue to face huge losses to lives and livelihoods. And while it is with deep disappointment and regret that we cannot bring Commonwealth leaders together at this time to discuss many of these critical issues, we must be mindful of the huge risks large meetings pose to all.

“I want to thank the Government and people of Rwanda for their professionalism, support, patience and their impeccable readiness to hold CHOGM. And I want to thank all our member countries and, in particular, the United Kingdom as our Chair-in-Office and India, who have suffered so grievously in these trying times. I look forward warmly to a time when we can be reunited with the Commonwealth family, face-to-face, in Rwanda when the conditions allow for us to do so safely and securely.”

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Boat Donated By Kagame To Nkombo Islanders Not Operational

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Residents of Nkombo Island will have to wait longer to travel on a boat donated to them by President Paul Kagame.

Nkombo island is located on Lake Kivu in Rusizi district. Residents last saw this boat in October last year when it was officially handed to the district.

According to authorities of Rusizi district, the delay to use this boat is because drivers are still undergoing intensive training until they learn to operate the water vessel.

Currently the boat is docked in Karongi district and will only be available when the drivers have fully completed training.

President Paul Kagame has a special attachment to the people living on Nkombo Island. He donated  the second boat to the islanders on June 29, 2015 while addressing opinion leaders in Rusizi district.

“I am giving you an even bigger vessel, please use it to relate, trade and utilize all the opportunities your district has to offer,” advised Kagame.

In 2010, Kagame donated a passenger boat with a capacity to carry 100 passengers and 40 tons of luggage. The island hosts over 180,000 residents.

For the past regimes, this island was extremely neglected and treated as though it was part of Democratic Republic of Congo formerly Zaire. Previous governments ridiculed and despised Nkombo islanders as backward people and attached them to ‘Bashi’, a Congolese tribe.

With this deep neglect sanctioned by previous regimes, Nkombo islanders invented a language known as ‘Amahavu’ a mixture of two dialects; Congo’s Lingala and Kinyarwanda.

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President Tshisekedi Orders Martial Law Rule In Kivu, Ituri

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President Felix Tshisekedi has ordered rule of martial law in DRCs North Kivu and Ituri provinces effective on Thursday, May 6.

The Congolese President called on the people of the two provinces “to cooperate closely with the military authorities deployed by denouncing enemies of the people and complicity at whatever level” with those perpetrating violence.

The shift in management of this part of the country is aimed at stemming the bloodshed and returning order to the region, the president said in an address on national television Monday.

During the period of martial law, Congo’s security forces will have the right to search homes, seize weapons and prohibit travel, Tshisekedi’s spokesman, Kasongo Mwema Yambab Yamba, said in a separate address.

The military and police authorities will also have the right to ban publications and meetings deemed contrary to public order and to prosecute those suspected of violating the peace, he said.

Eastern Congo with population of 20 million people, borders Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi. This region hosts at least 120 armed groups

Violence in eastern Congo includes numerous conflicts over control of land and resources, protection of local communities, and rebellions linked to neighboring countries.

Ituri and North Kivu are rich in metals like gold and coltan and armed groups including alleged criminal networks in the army sometimes profit from their trade.

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