Nchamigo’s life sentence reduced to 40 years
The Appeals Chamber of the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), has upheld a 15-year jail term for the former singer, composer and ballet troupe leader, Simon Bikindi, the tribunal’s Spokesman said yesterday.
The same court also reversed a number of convictions of Simèon Nchamihigo, reducing his sentence to 40 years instead of serving a life sentence.
Launching the ICTR youth sensitisation project in Huye District, Roland Kouassi Amoussouga, said that the judgment rendered by the Appeals Chamber in the Nchamihigo case is a confirmation of his guilt for numerous crimes during the Genocide.
According to a statement from the ICTR, the Appeals Chamber composed of Judges Patrick Robinson, presiding, Mehmet Güney, Fausto Pocar, Liu Daqun, and Theodor Meron, dismissed the appeals of both Bikindi and the Prosecution in their entirety.
The leader of “Irindiro” ballet troupe was guilty of single count of direct and public incitement to commit genocide based on public exhortations to kill Tutsis in Kivumu-Kayove road in Gisenyi prefecture in late June 1994.
He was arrested in The Netherlands in 2001 and transferred to the in Tribunal 2002 where he was subsequently sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2008.
The statement says the Appeals Chamber composed of Judges Patrick Robinson, presiding, Fausto Pocar, Liu Daqun, Theodor Meron, and Carmel Agius allowed Nchamihigo’s appeal in part.
It reversed Nchamihigo’s convictions rendered by Trial Chamber III in 2008 for genocide and murder as a crime against humanity for aiding and abetting the killing of Joséphine Mukashema, Hélène and Marie.
It also reversed his conviction for genocide in relation to instigating the killings of refugees taken from Kamarampaka stadium on 16 April 1994 and for instigating the killings at Shangi parish and Hanika parish.
It further reversed his convictions for genocide and extermination as a crime against humanity in relation to instigating the massacre at Mibilizi parish and hospital and the massacre at Nyakanyinya school.
The court affirmed Nchamihigo’s convictions for genocide and extermination as a crime against humanity for instigating killings, including those of Karangwa, Dr. Nagafizi and Ndayisaba’s family on or about 7 April 1994 and for instigating the massacre in Gihundwe sector on 14 or 15 April 1994.
It also affirmed his conviction for other inhumane acts as a crime against humanity for ordering the attack on Jean de Dieu Gakwandi. Finally, it affirmed his convictions for genocide and murder as a crime against humanity for instigating the killing of Father Boneza.
Nchamihigo, who was a Deputy Prosecutor in Cyangugu prefecture in 1994, was arrested in Arusha by Tanzanian authorities in 2001, at the request of the ICTR Prosecutor.
He will remain in the UN Detention Facility in Arusha, pending his transfer to the country where he will serve his sentence.