Terror suspect Lt. Mutabazi pleads guilty
Rwanda’s terror suspect Lieutenant Joel Mutabazi has finally pleaded guilty of staging a shooting in an attempt to get asylum from the UNCHR in Uganda.
During the pre-trial which resumed yesterday, February 12, 2013, prosecution projected a video captured during the interrogation of Lt Mutabazi in which he pleaded guilty of staging a shooting in an attempt to get asylum in Uganda
At the same trial which involves 15 other suspects, Mutabazi’s co-accused, Joseph Nshimiyimana denied charges refusing to respond to charges against him, changing the earlier statements in which he had pleaded guilty.
Nshimiyimana is alleged to be a member of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), and is accused of taking an assignment from Mutabazi to coordinate a series of grenade attacks around Kigali, especially two grenade blasts in Kicukiro market that killed one and injuring 14 others.
Lieutenant Joel Mutabazi, who was for the first time dressed in his full army uniform with his ranks attached to the uniform shoulder flappers, carefully listened and watched a video evidence in which he allegedly committed the crimes before living for Uganda.
Mutabazi took the court martial judge by surprise, asking what the judge thought of him whenever he looks at his case- “when you think of me and my case, which side do you think I fall?” Mutabazi asked.
In response, the presiding judge carefully responded to saying he has no feelings attached.
Though the video gave details of how he acquired the gun, how he used it and disposed it off, Mutabazi said that at the time, he was not his true self and apparently maintained silence in court and refused to stand trial, stating that he needed more time.
The trial is set to continue through this week at Kanombe Military High Court.