A loaded article last Friday appeared in the Toronto-based Globe and Mail, describing the frustration of Rwanda National Congress – the anti Rwanda terrorist group based in South Africa – at what RNC claims is the “refusal of the government of Rwanda to extradite alleged suspects in the Karegeya murder.”
Patrick Karegeya died in a Johannesburg hotel on New Year 2014 in a case that RNC and others jumped on, even before a preliminary investigation, to accuse Rwanda of being behind it.
Since then, the South African authorities carried out comprehensive investigations, and found nothing to link Karegeya’s demise to Rwanda.
But the Globe and Mail’s Johannesburg-based correspondent Geoffrey York has done everything possible to keep the RNC allegations of “an ongoing case in South Africa of the murder of Col. Patrick Karegeya”, while continuously and explicitly accusing Kigali of it.
It has also kept up the drumbeat of accusations that “Rwanda has refused to extradite ‘the suspects’ to South Africa.”
Rwanda has no extradition agreement with South Africa. Therefore, even if the RNC and York’s allegations were true, it is highly unlikely Rwanda would send any Rwandan national to be tried in South Africa.
The reliance of RNC on York is not a new strategy. Almost every article York writes about Rwanda appears to be sourced from, and quotes RNC and its associates, including the white nationalist lobby group AfriForum.
Another favourite theme of York is the vilification of the RPF, Rwanda’s ruling party; something in which he partners with virulent Canadian genocide denier, Judi Rever, who recently published a book pushing the long-discredited double-genocide theory.
Karegeya who died in mysterious circumstances in a hotel in Sandton had openly expressed ambitions to overthrow the government in Rwanda.
He, and RNC in general embarked on a violent anti-Rwanda agenda, one of their strategies being terrorist attacks in Rwanda.
In the period between 2010 and 14, a series of grenade blasts in open spaces in Rwanda claimed 17 lives, and injured at least 400 more people. Thorough investigations revealed this was the work of RNC.
Kayumba Nyamwasa, the current RNC boss, claims to be a refugee in South Africa, yet he is actually a wanted man for the grenade terrorism.
He is also named in the UN Group of Experts (GoE) reports as part of the “P5” platform one of which (RUD-Urunana) perpetrated last year’s terror attack in Kinigi, Northern Province in Rwanda.
In that particular attack, in October 2019, the terrorists killed 14 civilians before Rwandan security forces put them out of action.
Incidentally, the RNC appears to be revolting internally and splitting up over the disappearance of one of their senior members, Benjamin Rutabana.
York reports that he failed to get a response from Rwandan officials to his story. No official would discuss this issue with Taarifa either.
But it really is a no-brainer. From numerous past comments, different government officials have refused to be drawn into speculation over the death of Karegeya in Johannesburg, which was followed by media and political provocations by RNC fugitives, themselves wanted for terrorist acts in Rwanda.
Would South Africa really push for the extradition of Rwandan nationals when it never extradited Karegeya or Nyamwasa? Countries that have no extradition treaties work on the basis of reciprocity.
In the case of Karegeya, despite the unusual involvement of AfriForum there appears to be little evidence to pin any Rwandan, let alone have them extradited.
It is also interesting that Geoffrey York glosses over the white nationalist and racist agenda of AfriForum, and what lies behind its involvement with RNC and private prosecution of the Karegeya case.
It would be interesting to see the Globe and Mail go beyond York’s narrow interests in Rwanda and perhaps look into why violent fugitives posing as refugees in South Africa continue to wreak violence on their home country, associate with far-right groups like AfriForum, and yet get audience in international media.