re posted from GREAT LAKES POST
When will Britain wake up to the horror of Rwanda’s President?
20 September 2021
By Michela Wrong
I doubt that Paul Kagame would have me assassinated, but it became clear to me late on Sunday afternoon that, at the very least, I am in his sights. As President of Rwanda, Kagame became the toast of the international aid community – and collected billions of dollars in aid. But is this money well spent? My book, Do Not Disturb, takes a closer look at how Kagame operates. He doesn’t appreciate the attention.
My book kicks off with the strangling of Patrick Karegeya, Kagame’s spy chief, in a Johannesburg hotel in late 2013 — almost certainly on the President’s orders. It then explores the campaign of harassment, intimidation and murder that Rwanda has waged against dissidents scattered from Africa to Europe and Scandinavia to North America. It’s fairly long on evidence, which is perhaps why Kagame has gone to the surprising lengths of denouncing me on Rwandan state TV.
A friend in Nairobi called while I was at the recycling centre to tell me. Back at home, I tuned in — and my jaw dropped. Kagame’s interviews tend to be long and meandering — no one dares interrupt, after all. This interview with the de facto leader of Rwanda since its 1994 genocide, and a president more feared than loved, went on for nearly three hours, but the bit about me came early on. He was asked how he responded to criticism voiced abroad, in particular a book by a certain British author. ‘Oh,’ he said airily, ‘we know those who sponsored her to do it.’ This was a reference to Uganda, whose president was once Kagame’s boss but is now a loathed regional rival. Kagame cited players in ‘neighbouring countries’ along with ‘some from far away north’. It seemed I had written my book at the behest of not one but several hostile governments.
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