Three mayors and officials in the Northern Province have been dismissed


In a bid to uphold the core principles of unity enshrined in the Constitution, numerous local government leaders in the Northern Province have been relieved of their duties following an investigation into their failure to fulfil their responsibilities, New Times reports.

The group of dismissed officials encompasses the provincial executive secretary, three mayors, and other personnel from districts and a sector within the province.

Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente’s statement reveals that these officials were found to have fallen short in their obligation to uphold and safeguard national unity, a fundamental constitutional principle.

The Prime Minister’s action of dismissing them was carried out in accordance with the President’s directive, as the President is the guardian of the Constitution, which mandates all government officials, whether elected or not, to uphold the fundamental principles of the Constitution.

The list of those removed from their posts includes Geoffrey Mushaija, the provincial executive secretary, who has been replaced by Emmanuel Nzabonimpa in an acting capacity.

Among the district mayors who have been dismissed are Janvier Ramuli of Musanze, Jean-Marie Vianney Nizeyimana of Gakenke, and Marie-Chantal Uwanyirigira, the former Mayor of Burera District.

Interim mayors have been appointed for the affected districts: Hamis Bizimana will temporarily lead Musanze, Aimé-François Niyonsenga will act as mayor of Gakenke, and Jean-Baptiste Nshimiyimana has been appointed for the same role in Burera.

Additional individuals who were dismissed include Axelle Kamanzi, the vice mayor of Musanze in charge of social welfare, and Innocent Twagirimana, the executive secretary of Kinigi sector. Furthermore, senior staff members within the three districts were also relieved of their positions.

This series of dismissals follows the recent resignation of Andrew Mpuhwe Rucyahana, the vice mayor for economic development in Musanze District. Rucyahana stepped down due to his involvement in a gathering that took place in Kinigi Sector on July 9, which was subsequently deemed sectarian.

The event, involving the installation of the self-styled Abakono clan chief, drew over 600 attendees from various parts of the country, including government officials, local leaders, and figures from private and security sectors. The event was widely criticized for perpetuating sectarian sentiments, particularly in a country that still grapples with the aftermath of the Tutsi Genocide fueled by such divisions.

Many of the officials present at the event, including Esperance Nyirasafari, the Vice President of the Senate, issued public apologies and expressed remorse for their participation, vowing to avoid such divisive activities in the future.

Furthermore, Justin Kazoza, the individual who was inaugurated as the chief of the Abakono clan during the event, later issued an apology and renounced his newly-acquired title, acknowledging the potential harm it could cause to the unity of the nation.