Diane Rwigara: Prosecutors seek 22-year prison sentence for Rwandan activist


Prosecutors in Rwanda requested a 22-year prison sentence for Diane Rwigara, at the opening of her trial in the capital Kigali on Wednesday.

The female politician is one of Rwanda’s leading activists and critics of President Paul Kagame. She was prevented from running against Kagame in last year’s presidential election shortly before being arrested and charged with forgery and inciting insurrection – charges her supporters say are politically motivated.

Prosecutors request 22-year prison sentence

Prosecutors on Wednesday called for Diane Rwigara to receive a 15-year prison sentence for inciting insurrection and another seven-year sentence for forging documents during her attempt to apply for candidacy in last year’s presidential election.

Rwigara was also charged with treason shortly after her arrest last year but there was no mention if this during her single-day hearing at Kigali’s High Court.

The 37-year-old activist appeared in court on Wednesday alongside her mother, who was also arrested last year. Prosecutors are also seeking a 22-year prison sentence for her mother for inciting insurrection and promoting sectarianism.

The two women were released on bail last month after spending more than a year in detention. Both Diane Rwigara and her mother, Adeline, denied all charges against them on Wednesday and reiterated their political grievances in front of the court’s three judges.

Featured image: Twitter

About Aaron Brooks

Aaron Brooks is a UK journalist who wants to cut out the international agendas in news. Spending his early years in both England and Northern Ireland he saw the difference between reality and media coverage at an early age. After graduating from the University of Chester with a BA in journalism, his travels revealed just how large the gap between news and the real world can be. As Editor-in-Chief at East Africa Monitor, it’s his job to provide a balanced view of what’s going on in the region for English-speaking audiences.