Since March 27, 2016, the family of Mrs. Illuminée Iragena has no news about her since her disappearance in suspicious circumstances, which happened on her journey from home to workplace.  Mrs. Iragena, holder of the identity card number 1197570007371075, has 4 young children who are now without care, as her husband is in hiding for his personal safety. Mrs. Iragena’s family has sent a letter to the police to inform them about her disappearance, but as usual, they have not given any hint on what they have done to trace her whereabouts, making the whole incident suspicious.

The kidnapping of Mrs. Illuminée Iragena seems very likely to have been the work of the Rwandan security services.  Indeed, her kidnapping occurred a day after the kidnapping of Miss Leonille Gasengayire, the Assistant Treasurer of FDU-Inkingi party, who was abducted and was later found in the hands of the Police. Even though the Police had denied any knowledge about her abduction, Ms. Gasengayire was later released by the same local police three days after intense interrogation and thorough beating. During such an interrogation and torture, Ms. Gasengayire was extensively questioned about Mrs. Illuminee Iragena and her relationship with Mrs. Victoire Ingabire, the FDU-Inkingi Party’s President, and a political prisoner, currently serving a 15-year sentence in Rwanda.

Despite promises made by the Rwandan delegation at the last Geneva Conference on Civil and Political Rights, the Rwandan security services continue to abduct people and detain them in undisclosed locations, forcing them to confess to trumped-up charges. The fact that almost all of the kidnapped people are found at police stations when the international pressure intensifies is a clear indication that the Rwandan judicial system is bankrupt.  Obviously, many kidnaped people are never found. For instance, the Director of Rwamagana Hospital, Mrs. Marie Claire Uzamukunda from Gicumbi, Nothern Province, was kidnapped in Kigali on January 24, 2016 and up to date the Police have failed to find her or provide any information about their investigations. That’s why we are very worried about Ms. Iragena’s life.

The FDU-Inkingi Party denounces in the strongest terms possible such criminal acts that violate international and national laws and calls upon the Rwandan authorities to release Ms. Illuminée Iragena or produce her before a court of law if they have any charges against her.

Done in London on April 12, 2016.


Justin Bahunga

Commissioner for External Relations and Spokesperson