HUYE – Dons at the National University of Rwanda (NUR) on Friday added their voice in condemning the arrest of Rose Kabuye and the continued abuse of the International Justice system.
In a debate held at the Varsity’s main auditorium under the theme: ‘Reflections on the abuse of power by some European countries on Africa: Origin, Consequences and approach of solution,’ different speakers supported the principle of Universal Jurisdiction, but slammed some European countries, saying they have continued to abuse it to further their own political ends.
“There is need to control the use of the principle of Universal Jurisdiction because if not regulated, it will cause chaos in the International Justice system,” said Martin Ngoga, Rwanda’s Prosecutor General who was among the presenters.
Ngoga, in his presentation pointed out that there were procedural and substantive errors made in the arrest of Kabuye.
“It is a case of sheer cynicism and hypocrisy,” he said.
Dr Jean Damascene Bizimana, another speaker, said that there were glaring flaws in the indictments which should not have been committed by an experienced judge like Jean Louis Bruguière.
“Bruguiere violated the principle of secrecy of investigation which is provided for under the French Laws. In 2004, he gave out documents of the investigation to newspapers like Le Monde before the investigation was completed,” said Bizimana.
“Basing on these documents, journalists attacked different people indicated in the investigation in their writings. This was against the principle of presumption of innocence unless proven guilty,” he added.
Bizimana, noted that Bruguiere did not bother to visit the crime scene or ask for cooperation from Rwanda as regards the case he was investigating.
“This is mandatory especially for a case that can lead to the imprisonment of the accused under the French Law,” he said.
Bizimana, stressed that it is time for African countries to forge closer diplomatic ties in fighting such violations. He said that the principle of Universal Jurisdiction is good if it applies to all and not selectively.
Dr Jean de la Croix Nkuryija, a Political Scientist, said that African nations should draw lessons from the abuse of principle by forging a united front in fighting neo-colonialism. He called for the strengthening of regional, economic and political blocs.