Saturday, December 14, 2013

On The Kigali Trial of 2013: History Repeats Itself!

By Frank Samvura 
Gicumbi District
Northern Province

14 December 2013
Jomo Kenyatta is arrested
On Tuesday 12 December 2013, the whole world looked south, to celebrate the life of a man who was once labelled as a terrorist and sentenced to life in prison. Nelson Mandela dedicated his entire life to fighting against injustice and inequality. He defeated the powerful Apartheid government that jailed him for 27 long years without firing a single shot, and was elected first black President of the Republic of South Africa. Did Mandela jailers know that the fake Rivonia trial of 1963 was the tipping point of his struggle for racial equality in South Africa?What a great week we had! Last Thursday 12 December 2013, I was delighted to see the sons and daughters of Kenya’s Mau-Mau freedom fighters lead a colourful ceremony to celebrate 50 years of the independence of East and Central Africa’s largest economy. I would bet that when British colonialists unjustly sentenced and jailed Mzee Jomo Kenyatta for 7 years on 8th April 1953, they never thought he would emerge victorious to be the founding father of the new independent nation. Did the judges of the fake Kapenguria trial know they had strengthened an old man determined to free the people of Kenya?
Victoire Ingabire at her trial
This week was surely a week that some of us will never forget. I hate it when the 13th day of the month falls on a Friday. Either something bad happens to me, or it happens to an individual that I respect or love. On Friday 13 December 2013, Mme Victoire Umuhoza Ingabire was unjustly sentenced to 15 years in prison. Like Mandela and his comrades at the Rivonia trial, Mrs. Ingabire is being accused of plotting to overthrow an oppressive regime. My body was brewing with anger and disgust the moment I heard the news on BBC. But later in the evening, as I lay down on my bed, the following words came back to my mind: “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. Many believe that Martin Luther King’s prophecy of August 28, 1963 materialized the day Barack Obama was elected President of the United States. This is the same President who eulogized Nelson Mandela on December 10, 2013 saying: There are too many of us who happily embrace Madiba's legacy of racial reconciliation, but passionately resist even modest reforms that would challenge chronic poverty and growing inequality. There are too many leaders who claim solidarity with Madiba's struggle for freedom, but do not tolerate dissent from their own people"
Nelson Mandela in prison
I ended up sleeping extremely well on this Friday December 13, 2013. Why? Because the Supreme Court has just given Mme Victoire Ingabire another reason to fight against oppression and injustice in Rwanda. Like Kenyatta and Mandela, Ingabire will emerge victorious and free the people of Rwanda. No wonder why Ingabire was name “Victoire” or “Victory”. I’m convinced, more than ever, that my children and grand-children will one day gather at the Victoire Ingabire Amahoro Stadium in Kigali to commemorate the life of the first woman President of the Republic of Rwanda. Her name will be the hottest brand in the country. My youngest grand-daughters will have to work hard in School to be accepted at the prestigious Victoire Ingabire School of Leadership for girls. Every man and woman will want to have in his wallet an East African bank note bearing Ingabire’s image.
History repeats itself. The Kapengurai trial of 1953 was a fake. The Rivonia trial of 1963 was a phoney. And the Kigali trial of 2013 is a sham. No matter what happens, Ingabire will always be remembered for her fight for the voiceless, marginalized and consistently humiliated people of Rwanda. A dream always comes true.


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