October 2, 2019

Ex-Premier Twagiramungu: October 1 Is Day Of Mourning

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Former Prime Minister Faustin Twagiramungu

The day when the Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) rebels launched Liberation struggle, October 1, 1990, according to former prime minister Faustin Twagiramungu, is the day of when all Rwanda’s current problems started.

Twagiramungu, speaking for a group calling itself Rwandan movement for democratic change (MRCD), says RPF war killed two presidents and led to genocide.

“October 1 is a day of mourning,” Twagiramungu says in statement.

MRCD is led by Hotel Rwanda movie personality Paul Rusesabagina based in the U.S. Twagiramungu joined the group recently, and is now its vice president and spokesman.

MRCD has an armed wing operating from South Kivu, DRC, called CNRD, which attacked and killed several people in southwestern region of Rwanda. One of its commanders Callixte Nsabimana alias Maj Callixte was captured and now faces prosecution in Rwandan court.

Twagiramungu himself was the first post-genocide prime minister, a position he held for less than a year. He resigned and fled to Belgium. He returned in 2003 to contest in first presidential poll, in which incumbent Paul Kagame won with a landslide.

When the RPF attacked Rwanda in 1990, Twagiramungu was a key opposition figure against President Juvenal Habyarimana. It is this status that allowed him to get the prime ministerial post in the first government of national unity.

Today, Twagiramungy still remains one of the most vocal critics of President Kagame from his home in Belgium.

In his regular media appearances over the years, like in the statement issued yesterday, Twagiramungu blames Kagame for every problem in Rwanda, including the conflict that has ravaged DR Congo.

In a recent speech, Kagame said Twagiramungu was corrupt and had connived with a minister to steal over $200,000 at time when the country had no resources.

October 1 is Patriotism Day in Rwanda but is not a public holiday.

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