20 arrested over illegal protest

Police yesterday arrested 20 people who were holding an illegal public demonstration against a new policy on university students’ loan scheme, Police said in a statement.

Police yesterday arrested 20 people who were holding an illegal public demonstration against a new policy on university students’ loan scheme, Police said in a statement.

By press time, 16 of the persons had been released, while the others, considered to be the ringleaders, were still under Police custody as investigations continued.

The group was arrested at around 11am at the new Kacyiru Taxi Park in Gasabo District.

“The Rwanda National Police reminds the general public that there are procedures to be followed for anyone wishing to carry out demonstrations or gatherings. This is in order to ensure the safety and security of all Rwandans,” Spokesperson Damas Gatare said.

The four suspected ringleaders face between eight days and six months  in prison, and a fine of  between Rwf100,000 and Rwf1 million, if found guilty.

In recent years, government has gradually reduced state loans to students at public universities, arguing it needed to focus more attention on basic education.

The government says parents and guardians should instead take up more role in tertiary education. Recently, a decision was taken to revise the criterion that informed the process to identify the most disadvantaged students who still need government support.

 

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