By: Dr David Himbara
Dr Christopher Kayumba has vanished for nearly three months. Who is Dr Christopher Kayumba? He is a senior lecturer at the School of Journalism and Communication, University of Rwanda. Kayumba is also a columnist forThe Chronicles, a leading newspaper in Rwanda. We get a sense of what happened to Kayumba from Twitter – his last tweet was on December 10, 2019, and reads as follows:
“I’m at Kigali I international airport destined to #Nairobi & airline leaves at 1:10pm &doors are closed?! Police using guns! & keeping you as long as it wants! This coercive power will NEVER bring sustainable power. Beating people or threatening them doesn’t yield confidence! Beat!”
This does not sound good at all. It looks like Kayumba was prevented from travelling to Nairobi and detained by Rwandan security. I have not seen any reports about him ever since. This is terrible for Kayumba, his family,The Chronicles, and for Rwanda.
Should anything happen to him or The Chronicles, it will be the end of investigative and evidence-based reporting in Rwanda. The Chronicles is the only genuine newspaper left in Kagame’s Rwanda. Sadly, disappearances such as this have become part of Rwandan realities. We pray, dear God, that at the very least Kayumba has not been tortured.