US deports another Genocide fugitive

The US government has deported another Genocide fugitive, the second one this year, following the deportation of Jean Marie Vianney Mudahinyuka (alias Zuzu) who was handed over to Rwandan police at Kigali International Airport in January. The latest deportee – Marie-Claire Mukeshimana, was scheduled to arrive in the country sometime around midnight last night.
Jean Marie Vianney Mudahinyuka (Zuzu) was deported in January. The New Times/File.
Jean Marie Vianney Mudahinyuka (Zuzu) was deported in January. The New Times/File.

The US government has deported another Genocide fugitive, the second one this year, following the deportation of Jean Marie Vianney Mudahinyuka (alias Zuzu) who was handed over to Rwandan police at Kigali International Airport in January.

The latest deportee – Marie-Claire Mukeshimana, was scheduled to arrive in the country sometime around midnight last night.

Mukeshimana who hails from the former Butare region, in the Southern Province, faces deportation after migration enforcement authorities in the US found that she lied to get her entry papers.

This was the same reason Zuzu was deported.

According to John Bosco Siboyintore, the head of the Genocide Fugitives Tracking Unit (GFTU), Mukeshimana worked for World Vision during and after the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

“This is a lady who escaped justice, around 2005, when Gacaca was trying Genocide perpetrators. She was charged and convicted, in absentia, to 19 years, by the Gacaca court of Mbazi,” he said.

“She is believed to have played a role in the death of a child she picked from a Nuns’ home in Save. Actually, in 2008, US investigators came to Rwanda to probe her case.”

After her arrival, Mukeshimana will be sent to prison, but officials say she can appeal her Gacaca sentence.

Siboyintore said: “She will be taken to prison but she will be informed of her right to appeal.”

Domitila Mukantaganzwa, the Executive Secretary of the National Service of Gacaca Jurisdictions, also told The New Times that “with such special cases, as they come, we will still allow a chance for retrial if the people concerned want it. We haven’t closed retrials or appeals as of now.”

Gacaca courts are supposed to wind up activities countrywide by the end of this year.

Hon. Henriette Mukamurangwa, is a survivor of the Genocide from the former Butare Prefecture.

“Much as the deportation was sanctioned by other crimes, the judiciary in our country should seize the opportunity to ensure delivery of justice…if it means retrial, it should be granted to enable her stand in the presence of the people whose people she killed,” said the vocal parliamentarian.

She added that personally she didn’t know Mukeshimana, but she had heard a lot about her.

“Mbazi is not far away from Butare town and you hear a lot of tales about her because this is just a hill adjacent to where we were hiding during the Genocide,” said the lawmaker who lost her husband in the Genocide.

According to Mukamurangwa, Genocide fugitives, much as they continue disguising under false identities, the long arm of the law will eventually catch up with them.

james.karuhanga@newtimes.co.rw

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