Uganda Spy Chief Gen Kandiho Reportedly Met in South Africa with Exiled Former Rwandan Army Chief Gen Nyamwasa in December.

    The Chief of Military Intelligence in the Uganda People's Defence Force (UPDF), Leutenant General Abel Kandiho is reported to have met with the former head of the Rwandan army, General Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa, where the latter is exiled.

    According to a Rwandan news outlet, Taarifa, General Kandiho flew to South Africa in late December to deliver a special message from Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni to his South African counterpart, Cyril Ramaphosa.

    Allegedly, he later met with acting chief of Defence Intelligence Agency of South Africa, Maj Gen Ntakaleleni Simon Sigudu (pictured below seated right).

    The meeting came at a time of Uganda’s return to the Democratic Republic of Congo to hunt for the Allied Democratic Front Rebels linked to ISIS and the recent string of bombings in Uganda’s capital Kampala.

    General Nyamwasa, who is a highly wanted man in Kigali,  helped  President Paul Kagame come to power and was appointed army chief of staff in 1998.

    They had both been in the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) rebel movement which put a stop to the country's genocide in 1994 after some 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed.

    But their relationship soured and he was accused of undermining President Kagame.

    Timeline

    1994: Helped bring Paul Kagame to power and end genocide
    1998: Appointed army chief of staff
    2006: French judge accuses him of shooting down plane of Rwanda's ex-President Habyarimana in 1994, which sparked the genocide
    2008: Spain accuses him of links to death of Spanish nuns
    Feb 2010: Leaves post as ambassador to India, flees to South Africa
    Accused of links to grenade attacks in Kigali
    June 2010: Shot and wounded in Johannesburg
    January 2011: Sentenced in absentia to 24 years by a military court

    Although the alleged meeting took place nearly a month before recent efforts by Kampala to end hostilities with Rwanda, it could prove to be among  the hurdles. On Saturday, Leutenant General Muhoozi Kainerugaba, President Museveni's son and advisor, travelled to Kigali where he met with President Kagame.

    General Muhoozi's followed that of Ambassador Adonia Ayebare who was in Kigali, last week, to transmit a special message from President Museveni of Uganda.

    The relations between the two neighbouring countries characterised by counter accusations have been at their lowest for close to six years.

    What started as a cold war become pronounced in 2019 with  Rwanda closing its border with Uganda  and stopping its citizens from crossing to Uganda.

    Rwanda accuses Uganda of being linked to hostile groups, including the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) — an armed rebel group operating in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and the Rwanda National Congress (RNC), a rebel group founded by General Nyamwasa, all allegedly fighting Rwanda.

    The Ugandan government has dismissed the allegation as not true.

    On the other side, Uganda accuses Rwanda of infiltrating its  security agencies, with authorities saying some Rwandan security officials had direct and indirect contact with key strategic security personnel in Uganda who have sent information outside of official channels to Rwanda, a claim the Kigali establishment denies.

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    Evarist Chahali

    Evarist Chahali

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