UN Court upholds guilty verdicts Three convicts at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) had their guilty verdicts upheld by the Appeals Chamber of the tribunal. But one saw his life sentence reduced to 30 years in prison whereas life sentence was maintained for Lt.

UN Court upholds guilty verdicts

Three convicts at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) had their guilty verdicts upheld by the Appeals Chamber of the tribunal. But one saw his life sentence reduced to 30 years in prison whereas life sentence was maintained for Lt.

Idelphonse Hategekimana and the 30-year prison sentence stayed on for Gaspard Kanyarukiga. The chamber reduced the life sentence of Maj. Alloys Ntabakuze to a 35-year prison sentence.

Hategekimana, who commanded a military camp in Ngoma, now Huye District, is notoriously known for having issued orders for inhumane treatment and killing of the elderly Queen, Rosalie Gicanda. The queen was murdered along with other members of her household. Regarding the reduction of Ntabakuze’s life sentence, Mucyo said it was not strange for the tribunal to reduce sentences rendered towards former military officers, but maintained that the most important element is that his criminal culpability was confirmed.

ICTR begins winding up

The Arusha-based International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) on Monday swore in nine judges, including three East Africans, to wind up cases still pending at the UN Court ahead of its December 2014 closure.Veteran jurists Lee Muthoga from Kenya, Solomy B. Bossa from Uganda, Tanzania’s Joseph C. Masanche and William H. Sekule joined fellow judges Florence Arrey, Vagn Prüsse Joensen, Gberdao G. Kam, Seon K. Park, Rajohnson Rajohnson, M. R. Mparany in being sworn in to the International Residual Mechanism of the Tribunal.

Anti-Nyakatsi drive ends this month

The Ministry of Local government (MINALOC) is set to officially close the “Bye-bye Nyakatsi’ programme mid this month. When the programme started in 2010, the target was to construct over 124, 000 houses with MINALOC donating various construction materials including iron sheets, nails, among others. In an interview with The New Times mid this week, the head of the Rural Settlement Taskforce in MINALOC, Augustine Kampayana, said the construction of houses for the needy had been completed countrywide apart from only Huye and Gisagara districts in the Southern Province. The official said his ministry had so far spent over Rwf 7 billion on the houses saying a large portion of the funds were spent on purchasing materials. According to the official, districts also contributed to the programme by using their budgets to support the construction efforts in their respective districts.

Refugees warned over degrading environment

Congolese refugees at Kiziba Refugee Camp, Karongi District, have been warned against degrading the environment in and around the camp.The warning came when a high-level delegation led by the Minister for Disaster Preparedness and Refugee Affairs, Gen Marcel Gatsinzi, visited the camp on Tuesday. The UNHCR country representative, Neimah Warsame, expressed concern over the situation in the camp, which she said was worsening by the day.She noted that the big number of people in the camp is in itself a threat to the environment. The Governor of the Western Province, Celestin Kabahizi, expressed the same worries, noting that the continued degradation of the environment in the camp does long term damage to the whole area. He called for action against environmental degradation. During the visit, the officials planted trees in an initiative aimed at encouraging reforestation in the camp’s 27 hectares.

ICTR transfers fourth Genocide case file to Rwanda

The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) will transfer a fourth case file of a Genocide suspect to the Rwandan courts, as the UN court wraps up its operations. This is the case of fugitive former mayor (Brugmestre) of Nyakizu, Ladislas Ntaganzwa. Ntaganzwa is among the nine ICTR wanted fugitives who are still at large. The three cases already transferred to Rwanda by the UN-backed tribunal are Jean Uwinkindi, a pastor who was transferred to Rwanda in April, and two other files of suspects who are still on the run. Other files transferred to Rwanda are those of the former criminal investigation department inspector, Fulgence Kayishema, and another former Brugmestre, Charles Sikubwabo. If the fugitives are arrested they will be extradited to Rwanda. The transfer of cases to national jurisdictions is part of the ICTR’s plan to wind up its lower court cases by June and appeals by 2014.

Kigali lags behind in implementing projects

Kigali City has underperformed in the implementation of projects as reflected in the 2011-2012 financial estimates. Records indicate that the city has implemented only 35 per cent of the total projects. According to the implementation review carried out by the Ministry of Local Government, eight districts have so far exceeded 80 per cent execution of their respective budgets. The first three districts with the highest per cent in the implementation include Kayonza and Bugesera districts at 99 per cent, Nyanza at 98 per cent, with Kigali city at a meager 35 per cent. Generally, districts have performed well with most of them above 75 per cent.

Kagame meets Global Shapers Community

President Paul Kagame mid this week, met with 32 Global shapers, a global network of local communities set up one year ago by the World economic Forum (WEF). This relatively new community – the Global Shapers Community – provides youth with a global platform to shape the future – integrating the personal, community and global dimension.T

he Global Shapers Community is diverse in demographics, geographical areas and sectors.The meeting took place ahead of the official opening of the WEF in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Local communities are called hubs; globally there exists 157 hubs with more than 1200 members.

Global shapers have representatives in Sub-Saharan Africa consisting of 38 hubs and an additional 12 from North Africa. The leaders are under the age of 30 and gather on a regular basis to engage in activities and projects to benefit their local environments.