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CHANGE OF GUARDS – Museveni and Kagame are scheduled to meet on February 21, 2020 at the Katuna border. The much awaited meeting is meant to iron out their differences that have seen diplomatic tensions that climaxed in February 2019 when Rwanda imposed restrictions on the movement of its citizens to Uganda and flow of trade across the border. Owing to the misconception that Rwanda depended on Uganda for the Rwanda’s economic survival, Kampala had initially anticipated that the blockade would not be sustainable. Kampala had hoped that pressed by economic hardships and deprivation, the citizens of Rwanda would not only massively flee the country but would pressurize their government into lifting the blockade. Instead, one year later, it is evidently clear that it’s the Museveni regime that has suffered great losses in revenue and market for goods. On its part, by using alternative trade routes,  Rwanda has instead thrived and flourished. 

Rwanda accuses the Museveni regime of aiding dissident groups that are bent on destabilizing Rwanda, harassment, arbitrary arrests, detention without trial, forced disappearances, and killings of Rwandans who travel to Uganda. Rwanda has taken steps to prove its claims beyond reasonable doubt by physically neutralizing individual Rwandan key players involved and by presenting concrete evidence of Uganda’s involvement.
On Kampala’s part, the Museveni regime accuses Rwanda of infiltrating Uganda’s security structures but does not disclose the motive behind the said infiltration. The Kampala regime has gone ahead to purge individual players within its security agencies who are suspected of serving Rwanda’s interests.  The million dollar question is; what is it that you are hiding that Rwanda so much craves to spy on??? 

Kampala’s repeated attempted schemes to link Rwanda to the DRC based rebel ADF have not bore fruits. The most recent stage-managed ‘interception of Rwandan spies with war materials’ in Kanungu is one such childish gamble. The absence of lead security agencies like ISO and CMI in such a big catch that was simply left to Game Rangers and the Police coupled by live filming of the interception by NTV is highly suspect. The incident comes shortly after the opposition FDC and some Catholic Church Clergy in Uganda are accused of links with unnamed DRC based insurgents; not to mention the arrest and interrogation by Kinshasa of a former Joseph Kabila government spy chief upon his return from a secret trip to Uganda. 

As the two Presidents head to Katuna for a meeting, Uganda’s only interest is to see the border reopened. Uganda has been releasing Rwandan citizens from incarceration in the hope of duping Kigali into reopening the border. On Rwanda’s part, Kigali considers the freeing of its citizens from incarceration as secondary and considers Kampala stopping the aiding of Rwanda dissidents as the primary objective. It is just logical that part of Uganda’s revenue generated by the cross-border trade goes to aiding the Rwandan dissidents. In military terms, any country would endeavor to undermine the economic means of its adversary to make war, thus economic sabotage, by way of a trade blockade. 

The point of contention, therefore, is whether or not Museveni will, for the first time, admit to aiding Rwandan dissidents and commit to genuinely abandoning the scheme. In that case, the length of time it will take for Rwanda to satisfy itself with Kampala’s commitment will determine when the border will be reopened. Kampala is trying to hoodwink Rwanda into signing an Extradition Treaty that deals with fugitive criminals yet the Rwandan dissidents being political exiles cannot be subjected to extradition proceedings. 

Therefore, after the Katuna meeting, both leaders will return to their respective capitals empty handed and it won’t be over until it’s over.


—— AUTO – GENERATED; Published (Halifax Canada Time AST) on: February 19, 2020 at 05:40PM

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