The body of former Commissioner General of Police Brig. Gen. Andrew Rwigamba is expected in the country at around 1p.m Friday.
Rwigamba passed away Thursday from a hospital in Cairo, Egypt where he was receiving treatment.
This was confirmed by Faroh Ndahiro, the young brother to Rwigamba, during an interview with The New Times at the deceased’s home in Remera, where the vigil is being kept.
Ndahiro, a lawyer, said that his brother had only been sick for a short while before his health deteriorated, and was promptly transferred to Cairo International Hospital from where he passed.
Rwigamba, who was 64, is survived by five children.
The body is expected Friday afternoon, while burial arrangements will be communicated in due course, Ndahiro said.
Ndahiro added that his brother was just a fortnight ago in good health.
“He had just completed a meeting at MINADEF (Ministry of Defence), at around 8pm when he started feeling unwell and decided to go to King Faisal Hospital, where he was hospitalized and was okay for three days before his health started deteriorating very fast. This is when he was transferred to Cairo about a week ago,” he said.
Rwigamba was Commissioner General of Rwanda National Police until 2008 when he was replaced by his then Deputy, Mary Gahonzire in acting capacity.
He had held different other roles in Rwanda Defence Force and was at the time of his death, the Director-General in the Ministry of Defence, in charge of Foreign Military Relations and Cooperation, a position to which he had been appointed in 2011.
He had retired from active military service in 2013, at the rank of Brigadier General.
Ndahiro described his late brother’s life as being characterized by selfless patriotism, discipline, and brilliance.
“He was a very bright student in school, very quiet and always meant business. When the time to liberate the country came, he joined the RPF and participated in the struggle. At the end of the four-year struggle, he was a lieutenant colonel,’’ Ndahiro said.
Rwigamba was born on May 12, 1955, in Mutara Province and attended Kabarole Primary School.
His family then fled the country in 1964 to Uganda, where he attended his O’Level at Nyakasura School and later joined Makerere College for Advanced Level.
He later attained a Bachelor of Laws at Makerere University and a Masters of Arts Degree in International Studies at Nairobi University, as well as several other military courses.
He participated in the army struggle as a member of the Rwandese Patriotic Army that stopped the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi and liberated the country.
Among the duties he was charged with in RPA include being Head of Legal Services and was a member of the negotiation team that culminated in the Arusha Peace Agreement.
Rwigamba was also at one point the secretary to the RPA High Command, the highest organ of the four-year struggle.