A Kenyan firm has denied media allegations that it has business connections with the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda’s most wanted Genocide suspect, Félicien Kabuga.
Hashi Impex, a leading petroleum products marketing and distribution firm with interests in Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Uganda, was reported by a Kenyan newspaper, The Sunday Nation, as one of the Kenyan firms having commercial connections with Félicien Kabuga who is reportedly hiding in Kenya, aided by a huge fortune.
Speaking to the press yesterday at the ICTR in Arusha, Abdullahi Garane, the Legal Affairs Manager of Hashi Impex said; “We are doing business with the government of Rwanda; we cannot be dealing with Kabuga.”
The fugitive is allegedly intimately connected to the financing of the 1994 Genocide in Rwandan in which over one million Tutsi were killed. The wealthy businessman is believed to have procured the machetes which were used by the Interahamwe in the massacres.
In a detailed report on Kabuga’s whereabouts, The Sunday Nation of June 1 listed the petroleum firm as one of the Kenyan firms with commercial connections with Kabuga.
“....Kabuga is a wealthy Hutu businessman with vast interests in Kenya. He is associated with three companies, including Hashi Impex Limited at View Park Towers, Ndimo Company Limited, Zadok Transporters and Zadok United,” the article read in part.
But an infuriated Garane said: “We are distributing 300 million litres of fuel to Rwanda’s ElectroGaz; we cannot throw away such a relationship. Hashi Impex is fully owned by Ahmed Hashi Adam and Fatuma Mohamed Issi. The Nation story is baseless and unfounded.”
He said that his firm has taken the issue to court so that The Nation Media Group compensates the damages it has caused Hashi Impex.
The Chief Spokesperson of the ICTR, Roland Amoussouga, said he could not comment on the allegations, while Timothy Gallimore, the Spokesperson of the Prosecutor’s office also refused to comment.
A press release from Hashi Impex read in part; “The Nation’s report was intended to demonise Hashi Impex and has highly damaged the good name and reputation of the company.”
According to Garane, Hashi Impex was founded in 1991 and has a long-running relationship with the government of Rwanda; he said that the firm currently distributes 300 million litres of fuel per month.
Since 1994, the elusive Kabuga has been reported to be hiding in Kenya where he is alleged to own sizable investments.
It is not clear how serious his search has been but the government of Rwanda’s representative to the ICTR, Aloys Mutabingwa, says that the current head of the Kenyan Police has increased efforts in searching for the Genocide fugitive.
Mutabingwa adds that it is the reason why Kabuga has unscrupulously planted stories in the media. He was reported to have left Kenya in January 2008 and reached Norway through Sweden in March 2008.
Kabuga has a $5 million bounty on his head and is wanted for genocide crimes. He has also been listed by the US government as one of the most wanted persons today. His son-in-law, Ngirabatware Augustin, was recently arrested in Germany where he was hiding.
The Kenyan government has ordered Kabuga’s assets in the country to be frozen. These include apartments which are managed by a company, Kenyan Finance Trust, whose documents or physical address are not listed anywhere in Kenya. His earnings in Kenya are banked with the Commercial Bank of Africa and wired to Belgium.