I have read and heard various interviews given by Kayumba, most of which contained very serious distortions of empirical truths that can be verified by any party with interest in the same.
However, these series should not be construed to be a mere self defense, for there is absolutely no logic to defend serious distortions, wild and malicious allegations of hard truths, but rather to provide hard empirical evidence, that would inform readers about, and of serious allegations, distortions, malicious propaganda, which falls far below the expectations of a person of a General least a patriot he claims to be.
These series are pertinent, in that, Kayumba referred to my name in various contexts, be it our first contact in 2001 in the UK, when I was completing my PhD and him, doing his masters. Allegations made both in his BBC interview (Gahuzamiryango) and in Daily Monitor, of May, 30th.
I had not met Kayumba, before 2001, except that, I had heard about him from various circles albeit with different opinions about a man who held a the highest military office, later on various senior positions in our country.
Contrary to his allegations that he worked for these positions and as such merited them, various positions he held were mere appointments by an appointing authority, who would and indeed removed him from these positions as situations warranted.
Even the position of a general is reversible if the person to whom it has been bestowed behaves in a manner that contradicts the virtues demanded by this position. His friend Patrick Karegeya, was for instance demoted from a colonel for serious mistakes for which he served a prison sentence.
Thus, to claim that he earned these appointments is, but simplistic.
Nonetheless, my knowledge of Kayumba ranged from the extreme side which sold the person of Kayumba as cunning, trick star, clientalistic, and patronalistic in his management of our military force, all aimed at curving sphere of influence to meet his selfish interests. Such style of military management which rewarded those who belonged to his camp and vanquished those who did not, was facilitated by such antics as promotion by patronage, and giving of financial rewards to those he wanted to be patrons to his camp.
This information, which is available from the top military officers of our defense forces down to the rank and file, subordinated national security interests to personal interests, which was extremely dangerous to a country that faced a determined enemy of unfinished business of genocide across our borders.
Furthermore, those who defined the person of Kayumba as such, went on to allege that, such behavior would in fact lead to serious division among our forces, to such extent that, those pro and indifferent to Kayumba would compromise our security interests.
Those who ‘defined’ Kayumba according to the foregoing nature, have been verified, and authenticated by his outrageous utterances both in print and electronic media of late.
However, other circles portrayed him, as a gentleman, kind, and generous, and humility (the later aimed at winning the hearts of opportunists) but I am certain that he shown to these admirers his true colours, beyond any reasonable doubt.
But, for a person who had not known him before, except through these circles, one would not be able to judge the person of Kayumba objectively. No more.
Nonetheless, my first impression of Kayumba in 2001 confirmed to me, a couple of things. First, clientalism was indeed a serious vice (and to him a virtue with which he would win people to serve his self-fish interests) I detected of this man, for although I was coming from a strong a academic background with independence of mind typical of this environment, it took him a few hours to seem to have known me much more, than one would imagine.
To me, this was rather scary and I kept on asking myself what was going on, and what was he up to. The confusion that people from the same country meeting in UK would behave as such, was least of my problems, and as such this did not calm my anxiety.
Later on however, I had to discover that, this man in fact wanted me, to be an associate, ( a close friend of his where we meet was later to tell me that, Kayumba would arrange for me a top position in the government of Rwanda), where according to this client, Kayumba held clout in matters of appointment.
I had to tell this friend of his that, I am not a job seeker, for I had a five year contract as a Vice Rector in an University in Nairobi, and due to be promoted to a professor of finance in the same university. This did not did not stop our communication though, but, it increased my anxiety to know better the man sold to me as a king maker in our country, and one to whom (according to this friend of his, many owed their appointments to high offices).
The more I talked to him, the more I detected from our conversations a sense of pride aimed at deliegnating the client from the system to wards Kayumba, as a system in its own right.
This was even more scary, for I knew that, our country had an efficient system that served collective interests of Rwandans, rather than a section thereof. Besides, the more information I got especially from close friends in high offices in the government, confirmed many thing, which were rather very disappointing for a person, a general and worse still our army chief of staff.
Deserted the Forces he Commanded to pursue a Masters Degree in UK.
Thus for instance, whereas both of us were students in UK at the time, we nonetheless were pursuing studies for totally different reasons. I was doing my PhD as an academician’s professional fulfillment and a precondition for promotion to professorialship.
I was to learn that, Kayumba was doing his masters after disserting the forces to which he was a commander, and that the scholarship was in fact arranged for him by friends in UK government, and not the government of Rwanda.
I was also late to learn that, he left for his masters when the country was at war, which was very outrageous for a general, leave alone a commander in chief. To leave a force at war baffled every one who had known a man that claimed to be a patriot.
But, this signaled one thing. He had no commitment to the cause, for which our country paid the heaviest price any country has paid in history. Was this a serious error of judgment on his part? Was it insubordination? Was it even self seeking and egoistic in the extreme? It all defied any logic.
This action for a person who had purportedly fought to liberate his country, was a very serious contradiction that raised many questions over the entire person of a ‘General’, ‘a senior RPF cadre’,’ a liberator’, and ‘army chief’.
It only confirmed a couple of serious vices with, and in person of Kayumba. Self-centredness, cheap popularity, lack of commitment to a cause he purportedly would shade his blood.
But, his extracts in his article published in Daily Monitor of 3oth May, 2010, put to rest all doubts as to his intentions, and his person.
He did not believe in the war Against Genocidiere:
In his article, Kayumba avers that, he did not believe in the war that was being fought by RDF forces in 2000, in the Northwestern parts of our country against genocidal forces.
Much as this has shocked all Rwandans except perhaps genocidiere, it more than any thing questions all he claims in his article… love for his country, patriot etc, but served to confirm doubts many had over his person.
The war he abandoned was a continuation of a war that he started with many other comrades in 1990. The enemy the country was fighting was the same he fought in 1990, and so was enemy’s ideology of unfinished business. That is, to complete genocide against the tutsi. One wonders what Kayumba disagreed on. Was it the issue of the threat?,
Was it even the approach to this war (which he was later to tell high ranking comrades that, … let them fight, and when he comes back after his master, he will continue where he left) which was discussed and agreed upon in the military council whose operations he chaired. Can one imagine General David Howell Petraeus, Commander of US Central Command, telling Americans that, he does not believe in the war against Al-Qaida, a terrorist group whose form and shape is complex, and whose intentions are similar to FDRL (Interahamwe) to kill innocent citizens.
The reaction of US government would be decisive and effective, I believe. There is no parallel here though.
But again in the same article in Daily Monitors, he makes clear his intentions by associating and sympathizing with Ingabire who has openly questioned genocide in Rwanda.
All these events are highly correlated that, one can only define the person of Kayumba as a traitor atleast, and a genocide denier utmost.
One wonders then, how he could be referred to as “an exemplary officer” a claim he made in one of his interview, for this is a contradiction to the character and nature of the person Kayumba.
Some even went on to call him a hero, but again heroic actions that involve sacrifice for a major cause (ours was by all definitions a cardinal cause) are consistent to the last day of the hero.
That he chose to abandon a force at war to pursue a masters degree, and later alone flee the country on interrogation, negates any substance of a hero, a situation that simply confirms the opposite.
To be continued…