District leaders face action over burial ‘boycott’

Three senior leaders of Nyabihu District, Western Province, are in hot soup after they boycotted the burial of victims of a recent shooting spree in the area. Western Province Governor, Celestin Kabahizi, has written to the District Advisory Council, demanding that the Council takes appropriate action against the Vice Mayor in charge Social affairs, Eugenie Mukamunana, the Executive Secretary, Emmanuel Habyarimana, and the Director in charge Good Governance, Eugene Rudaseswa, for shunning the burial.
Emmanuel Habyarimana, the executive secretary of Nyabihu district
Emmanuel Habyarimana, the executive secretary of Nyabihu district

Three senior leaders of Nyabihu District, Western Province, are in hot soup after they boycotted the burial of victims of a recent shooting spree in the area.

Western Province Governor, Celestin Kabahizi, has written to the District Advisory Council, demanding that the Council takes appropriate action against the Vice Mayor in charge Social affairs, Eugenie Mukamunana, the Executive Secretary, Emmanuel Habyarimana, and the Director in charge Good Governance, Eugene Rudaseswa, for shunning the burial.

The letter, dated October 9, and addressed to the Council, indicates that, after the October 8 shooting incident in Mukamira Sector, in which six people died and more than ten others were injured, it was noted that some leaders skipped the victims’ burial ceremonies and failed to commiserate with the bereaved families.

“…the purpose of this letter is to ask you to take appropriate punishment within the law against the vice Mayor in charge of social affairs, the district Executive Secretary and the district official in charge of good governance,” the letter reads in part.

The Governor’s letter was copied to the Local Government Minister, provincial Executive Secretary, Paul Jabo, and Nyabihu Mayor, Jean Damascene Ndagijimana.

Reacting to the letter, Mukamunana said she was surprised to be accused of boycotting the burial and being unmindful yet she was “directly and actively involved in the burial arrangements let alone attending.”

“Well, I’m not waging war in the press, but I am telling you the reality; the accusations are false and all security guys who were there can attest to that. I was there and I’m the one who called for ambulances,” Mukamunana said.
The Executive Secretary, Habyarimana, claimed that he was on official assignment which even the Mayor was aware of.

However, sources at the District that opted to remain anonymous, said the Governor’s instructions could have been influenced by the Nyabihu Mayor, due to infighting which has rocked the District for the last two years. The Mayor vehemently denied this.

Other sources said the leaders in question have written to the Council, expressing their concerns before a meeting is convened.

Law no.08/2006 of 24/02/2006 that determines the organization and functioning of the districts gives authority to the advisory council which is a supreme organ of the district to criticize, suspend or sack the management of the district.

A governor can ask (in writing) the District Advisory Council to sit and pass a resolution condemning or punishing an employee of the district who he/she feels did not perform what he or she was supposed to do.

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