Leon Mugesera’s virulent and acidicly hateful speech in 1992 calling for the murder of all Tutsi and throwing them in the river Nyabarongo has no equal. Made in impeccable Kinyarwanda for maximum effect, this speech laid the foundation for the mayhem and murder that were soon to follow.
Fast forward: Mugesera now reportedly wants to testify at his trial in French. And no, it is not to impress the court that he is learned and can speak French — if that be the measure. It is to distance himself from his vicious and hateful words and confuse the court. He has it coming. At least be a man and acknowledge your misdeeds.
Having exploited, manipulated and abused the Canadian justice system for over 16 years, Mugesera now thinks he can do the same in Rwanda. I say not. Peter Erlinder tried and ended up in the dock looking like a frightened wet chicken.
In June, 2011, I happened to be in court in Kigali when Ingabire made an appearance. Her arrogance and disrespect of the court knows no bounds, and would surely earn her a contempt citation in many other less lenient jurisdictions.
Yet we hear empty rhetoric and wild accusations from all sorts of people decrying Rwanda’s (they say) un-fair and not so transparent justice system. Give me a break. Where else would these clowns get such good treatment? On her day in court that day, Ingabire was wearing a smart, hard-pressed pink dress, high heels, and red lipstick. You could easily think she was going for a play audition.
No, Rwanda’s justice system has stood the test of time and will not bow to outside pressure. If Ingabire and Mugesera, through their highly-priced European and American lawyers think they will bend the rules to steamrole their agenda, they better think again.