John Williams Ntwali, a Rwandan independent journalist, has been killed in a road crash, Rwandan police said on Friday.
Family members last heard from him on Tuesday. Ntwali was 44 years old.
“Ntwali didn’t have any identification on him,” officers claimed. Rwandan officials said that they identified Ntwali on Thursday and informed his relatives immediately.
Officials told local media that the driver of the vehicle involved in the accident that caused Ntwali’s death was in police custody.
Ntwali produced reports that was critical of the Paul Kagame-led Rwandan government.
“I last saw him on Tuesday afternoon, and we spoke on phone again that night. I did not hear from him again,” a family member, who asked not to be named, said.
A Rwandan journalist who wished not to be named shared a few details about Ntwali’s final days.
“On early Tuesday morning, 17th January 2023, he (Ntwali) was called by criminal Paul Kagame’s police crime intelligence department under ruthless CP Egide Ruzigamanzi for interrogation/chat. On this early Tuesday, 17th January 2023, he told family and friends that he had been called and instructed to appear at Remera Police Station by crime intelligence,” the journalist narrated.
“The next thing the family heard was yesterday, 19th January 2023, being called and instructed by the police to go to King Faisal Hospital to pick the remains of their relative, Ntwali John Williams. Criminal Paul Kagame’s killer police told relatives that Ntwali John Williams died in a motorbike accident.
“From Tuesday to yesterday, 19th January 2023, relatives and friends didn’t know his whereabouts.
“On Tuesday, 17th January 2023, his Twitter account was deactivated and then reactivated yesterday evening. Who deactivated and reactivated his Twitter account? Obviously, his killers, criminal Paul Kagame’s killers under crime intelligence are now in control of all his social media handles.
“Criminal Paul Kagame’s killer police force under crime intelligence commanded by serial assassin CP Egide Ruzigamanzi did not tell the family when and how the said motorbike accident happened, time and place of the accident, who else was involved in the accident and if there had been any arrest(s).
“Obviously, at the moment, the family is going under enormous threats to not talk, similar modus operandi unleashed on other family members who have lost loved ones at the hands of Criminal Paul Kagame.”
Human Rights Watch (HRW) called for a prompt and effective investigation into Ntwali’s death on Friday.
“Ntwali was regularly threatened due to his work as a journalist exposing human rights abuses in Rwanda and had expressed concerns about his safety to Human Rights Watch,” HRW stated on Friday.
“News of Ntwali’s death emerged on the evening of January 19, 2023. Police asked Ntwali’s brother to identify his body at Kacyiru Hospital morgue, telling him that Ntwali had died in a road accident the night of January 17.
“The police told the New Times website that Ntwali died in a motorbike accident in Kimihurura, Kigali, on January 18 at 2:50 am, but to date, have not provided details of the accident such as a police report, its exact location or information on the others involved. Human Rights Watch is not aware of any reports about an alleged accident coming to light until the evening of January 19.”
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