By Charles Mugabo
Paul Rusesabagina is not only an imposter but also a fraudster in many ways.
He is the only person known to have made financial gains out of the 1994 Genocide.
When the Tutsis were being massacred outside the Hotel, he highjacked Hotel des Mille Collines and later managed to get official permission from SABENA to manage it.
He managed the hotel in the way he wished, enriching himself in the process. After the Genocide, he turned round and made a fortune by selling the lie that he had saved about 1280 Tutsis by cajoling and bribing the otherwise deadly genocidaires.
Morally, he pretends to have saved the Tutsis during the Genocide whereas his actions could actually have endangered the very people he was purporting to protect.
Financially, he presents himself as a philanthropic humanitarian, whereas any survivor from the hotel paints him, as we have been highlighting in our previous writings, as a ruthless businessman whose sole objective was to enrich himself. He has used his newly acquired fame usurped from Hollywood, to indulge into politicking that exposes his real ethnic and revisionist tendencies.
In his autobiography in which he brands himself as an “ordinary man” under extraordinary circumstances, the false self fulfilling image he duped into filmmakers just to make more money. He portrays himself as a conscientious hotel manager, intent on making money for the Hotel, despite the horrendous needs and precarious conditions in which his “unusual” guests were experiencing.
Let nobody be fooled by his hoodwinking styles of pretending to be “a conscientious hotel manager making money for the Hotel.”
What did he do with the money he collected from those who could pay for their dear life? Can he explain why despite instructions from Sabena Authorities not to charge the Hotel residents (a copy of which I have), he ignored them and continued with the extortion?
In any case has he been that conscientious to hand over the money he collected to the Hotel owners after Genocide?
After gaining a lot of money and great fame from the film “Hotel Rwanda” in which he portrays himself as a Good Samaritan, the ambitious Rusesabagina created a foundation in his name purportedly to collect funds to support orphans and widows of the 1994 Genocide.
On the foundation website, it is said that “The Hotel Rwanda Rusesabagina Foundation (HRRF) provides support, care and assistance to children orphaned and women abused during the Genocide in Rwanda.
The charity is run from Rusesabagina’s lawyer’s office in Boston. It has no employees and is simply a conduit for money to the foundation programs.
He has been touring the world fundraising for this so-called charity of his. However, there is no single record where this foundation has assisted in any way one of these orphans and widows in Rwanda or anywhere else.
As a matter of fact, several funding institutions have been asking Rusesabagina to account for the money they gave him for his charities. On May 4, 2007, Conrad Hilton Foundation requested Hotel Rwanda Rusesabagina Foundation to give details on how $100,000 grant given to them was used.
The previous request had been done in December 2006 and no answer to that effect was submitted. When pressed by a BBC interviewer to name those he supported in Rwanda, Rusesabagina had to admit that he did not actually support any body, but instead indulged in his now too familiar rhetoric, saying he fears for his life and blaming everything on the Rwandan leadership.
This is not surprising however as Rusesabagina has transformed the HRRF into a family thing and this is how: Hotel Rwanda Rusesabagina Foundation was incorporated and approved in the state of Massachusetts in May 2005.
Its board members are Paul Rusesabagina, Chairman, Tatiana Mukangamije (his own wife), treasurer, Claude Karambizi (his son-in-law), James Nkunzimana (another one of Rusesabagina’s son-in-laws), director.
No wonder that Rwandans suspect that the money donated by well-wishers for charitable causes has been channeled to Zambia to finance Rusesabagina’s transport businesses and to support genocidaires fugitives in that country evading justice, on the pretext that they are refugees.
They also rightly suspect that the money raised might end up buying weapons to destabilize Rwanda and the entire Great Lakes Region again, now that he has embarked on a futile attempt to win power.
Indeed, in a series of articles, documentaries and interviews Rusesabagina has been deliberately distorting and manipulating facts about Rwanda to promote his smear campaign as he presents himself as the “only remedy to the precarious situation”; this for sure is wishful. Rusesabagina’s chosen route is the perpetuation of divisive propaganda reminiscent of the past regimes through his wild claims that there is ‘an ongoing genocide in Rwanda against Hutus.’
He does so in a bid to re-ignite the frenzy of ethnic divide among Rwandans in a bid to rally support behind himself. Worse still, despite having given the message which he did through the movie; Hotel Rwanda, on other occasions denies the 1994 Genocide saying the term was a designation of the UN Security Council. This is a clear indication that Rusesabagina’s thinking is driven by illusions and sentiments and he is as an individual dishonest with himself, his motherland and with other peace loving Rwandans.