The Leo Mugesera Case


BY EDWIN MUSONI, 24 MAY 2012

Nyarugenge Intermediate Court today rejected Leon Mugesera‘s plea for two months to review his case. Appearing before Judge Saudah Murererehe, Mugesera complained that he received his dossier six days ago and needed more time to read it and analyse it thoroughly.

“There is no way I could have analysed a 240 page dossier in six days.

The prosecution has had this dossier for three months and 24 days; if we are to have equality before the law then I should be given more time,” Mugesera told the Court.

His lawyer, Donat Mutunzi argued the two months was more reasonable time the court could give him.

However the judge turned down the defence’s requests and ordered that the pre-trial commence.

“Considering that Mugesera has, in the past been given all the time he requested to prepare for his pre-detention trial, the court has rejected his request and orders that the pre-trial commences immediately,” Judge Murererehe read the court decision.

However, in a dramatic turn, Mugesera immediately informed the court that he is appealing the decision in the High Court, prompting the judge to announce that the court proceedings would resume after the appeal.

Last month, Mugesera lost an appeal to the High Court, when the latter ruled that he should be interrogated in Kinyarwanda, instead of his “preferred language” of French.

The Genocide suspect was deported from Canada earlier this year after losing a nearly two decades legal battle against deportation.

He faces charges that mainly stem from a speech he delivered in Kabaya, Rubavu in 1992, in which he openly called on the Hutus to wipe out the Tutsi.

Prosecution alleges that the speech was a major factor in the buildup to the Genocide against the Tutsi, which claimed at least a million lives, between April and July 1994.

No date set yet for the appeal.

“Discour leon Mugesera (Youtube)- in Kinyarwanda”

“LEON MUGESERA SPEECH/EYE WITNESS TESTIMONY (Kinyarwanda)”

Sources: allafrica.com, YouTube

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