It was just a matter of formality and time before President Kagame could accept the resignation for the former State Ministers Evode Uwizeyimana and Isaac Munyakazi who tendered in their resignations last week on February 6.
On Thursday morning, the Prime Minister’s Office confirmed that the Head of State confirmed the resignations –a move that could lead to the officials facing further disciplinary or investigations for wrong doing.
“On 12th February 2020, the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister, Dr. Edouard Ngirente informed former Ministers of State, Mr.Evode Uwizeyimana & Dr. Issac Munyakazi that H.E the President of the Republic accepted their resignations,” the Office of the PM tweeted.
It is not yet clear if Dr. Munyakazi, who was the Minister of State in charge of Primary and Secondary Education until last week is facing investigations but the National Public Prosecution Authority (NPPA) confirmed that Uwizeyimana’s file was submitted to prosecution by Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB).
Uwizeyimana, who was the Minister of State in charge of Constitutional and Legal Affairs, resigned after an altercation with a female security guard at Grand Pension Plaza.
The incident which was first reported by Journalist Joseph Hakuzumuremyi, saw the vocal lawyer reportedly shoving and pushing the ISCO security guard identified as Olive Mukamana after the latter allegedly failed to recognise him, ordering him to go through the scanner.
An angry Uwizeyimana is said to have felt disrespected and reacted by pushing the guard who was insisting that he goes through the scanner like other people.
The incident was investigated by RIB, which subsequently submitted the file to the Prosecution but the former Vice Chairperson of the Rwanda Law Reform Commission was not detained.
The Prosecution Spokesperson Faustin Nkusi confirmed to KT Press that his file is still under review and future developments will be communicated.
“Yes, we received the file. We are still assessing it but the proposed charge is likely to be ‘Unintentional bodily harm’ which is stipulated in Article 118 of law Nº68/2018 of 30/08/2018 determining offences and penalties in general,” Nkusi said.
The law states that “Any person who, through carelessness, inattention, negligence, lack of precaution and foresight, causes bodily harm to another person but without any intention of endangering his/her life commits an offence,”
“Upon conviction, he/she is liable to imprisonment for a term of at least three (3) months and not more than six (6) months and a fine of at least five hundred thousand Rwandan francs (FRW 500,000) and not more than one million Rwandan francs (FRW 1,000,000) or only one of these penalties,”
The law further said that if the offence results in death, the penalty is imprisonment for a term of six (6) months and not more than two (2) years and a fine of at least five hundred Rwandan
Francs (FRW 500,000) and not more than two million Rwandan francs (FRW 2,000,000), or only one of these penalties.
Uwizeyimana resigned after intense social media pressure, despite efforts to make amends by apologizing and making up with Mukamana and ISCO heads.
Mukamana revealed that she requested Uwizeyimana to go through the scanner instead of passing on the side but the official reacted by pushing her out of the way. Some social media users asked why a female security guard would check a male but Mukamana denied attempting to check the former Minister.
“I only directed him. I didn’t want to check him. When I told him to go through the scanner to see what he has, he shoved me and I fell down,” Mukamana said in a recent interview.
The ISCO guard said that she fell flat and started sobbing, having just returned to work from her maternity leave. Her colleague followed the State Minister into the ATM booth where he had gone and locked him inside, demanding to know who he was.
Uwizeyimana then revealed that he was a Minister and he was urged to apologise to Mukamana. It is said that he then took the security guard into his car where he gave her money to buy her damaged phone.
Uwizeyimana later met Mukamana and her bosses at ISCO as a way of making up with the guard but it was a little too late.
Dr. Munyakazi on the other hand is said to have resigned after being caught at the centre of a number of scandals that rocked the ministry charged with ensuring quality of education.
It is reported that Dr Munyakazi interfered with the process of releasing national exam results by allegedly colluding with officials at Rwanda Education Board (REB) to give a good ranking to some schools which had not performed particularly well.
Other reports suggest that the State Minister was caught in a number of personal scandals and using his power to influence things in the Ministry, exhibiting a conflict of interest.
Other sources also indicate that Munyakazi could have been held liable for the recent confusion in the language of instruction to be used in primary schools. It is not clear if he faces any investigations.