Critic of Rwanda’s president blocked from planning trial defense – lawyer

KIGALI (Reuters) – A critic of Rwandan President Paul Kagame cannot plan her defense on charges of insurrection and forgery because prosecutors have denied access to her case file, her lawyer said on Monday.

Diane Shima Rwigara, a 35-year-old accountant, is the latest in a series of political opponents of Kagame to face criminal charges.

She is accused of faking the registration papers she filed to stand against Kagame in an August election. She was barred from running and he won with 98.8 percent of the vote.


Rwigara accuses Kagame of stifling dissent and has criticised the Rwandan Patriotic Front’s (RPF) tight grip on the country since it fought its way to power to end a genocide in 1994.

On Monday, her lawyer Buhuru Pierre Celestin told the court in the capital Kigali he should have been handed the full charge sheet before the hearing resumed. FULL STORY