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Un saint ou un démon ?!
eniyitegeka12.jpg
Eliézer Niyitegeka

L'ex-ministre Niyitegeka pronait la paix, selon un ancien politicien
 
Hirondelle News Agency (Lausanne),12 Novembre 2002
Publié sur le web le 13 Novembre 2002, Arusha
 
L'ex-ministre de l'information sous le gouvernement intérimaire, Eliézer
Niyitegeka, prônait la paix entre les Rwandais, a déclaré un ancien politicien
entendu mardi par le Tribunal international pour le Rwanda (TPIR).
Ancien responsable politique sous les ex-présidents Grégoire Kayibanda et
Juvénal Habyarimana, André Sebatware, 63 ans, a été cité comme témoin par
la défense d'Eliézer Niyitegeka, poursuivi pour génocide et crimes contre
l'humanité. André Sebatware a affirmé que l'accusé était un démocrate et un
homme de paix.
 
Sebatware a été notamment bourgmestre, préfet et ministre. Dans les années
1990, il avait adhéré au même parti que Niyitegeka, le Mouvement
démocratique républicain (MDR, opposition).
"Il aimait la démocratie, la paix, soutenait les accords d'Arusha", a indiqué
André Sebatware en parlant de Niyitegeka.
Les accords d'Arusha avaient été négociés entre le gouvernement rwandais et
son opposition armée et prévoyaient notamment le partage du pouvoir entre
divers acteurs politiques.
Le témoin a soutenu que l'accusé avait toujours combattu la discrimination
ethnique et régionale.
André Sebatware a décrit Niyitegeka comme un chrétien pratiquant. "Tuer,
voler, tout cela Niyitegeka ne pouvait le supporter. Son père était pasteur. Il
était chrétien. Il allait à l'église. S'il avait commis ces crimes, il aurait violé les
objectifs du MDR et péché contre ses ses convictions religieuses", a expliqué
le témoin.
André Sebatware a déclaré que Niyitegeka avait du respect pour les femmes,
s'étonnant de ce fait qu'il soit accusé notamment de viols.
Eliézer Niyitegeka est poursuivi pour des massacres de Tutsis dans sa région
natale de Kibuye (ouest du Rwanda). Il plaide non coupable.
André Sebatware est le neuvième témoin de sa défense. Le témoin a indiqué
qu'il était lui-même sur la liste des personnes recherchées pour génocide par
Kigali, mais qu'il y figurait pour des raisons politiques.
 
Le témoignage de Sebatware se poursuit mercredi devant la première chambre
 de première instance du TPIR présidée par la juge sud-africaine Navanethem
Pillay et comprenant en outre les juges, norvégien Erik Mose, et sénégalaise
Andrésie Vaz.
Sebatware devait initialement témoigner dans l'anonymat mais il a demandé de
déposer à visage découvert, "parce que je n'ai rien à cacher", a-t-il dit.
 
Internews (Arusha)
November 13, 2002
Posted to the web November 13, 2002
 
Mary Kimani
Arusha
 
Andre Sebatware, a former Rwandan minister between 1967 and 1973,
yesterday admitted before judges at the International Criminal Tribunal for
Rwanda (ICTR) that he is on the Rwandan government list of genocide
suspects.
"I am on that list. I have been on it since 1998 everyone who is an enemy of
the government ends up on that list," Sebatware told the court.
Sebatware is testifying in the defense of Eliezer Niyitegeka, former Rwandan
minister of information.
Niyitegeka, 50, has denied 10 charges of genocide, conspiracy to commit
genocide, direct and public incitement to genocide, rape and murder. He
allegedly committed the crimes in his native Kibuye Province.
According to the prosecution, Niyitegeka helped to plan, and participated in,
massacres of ethnic Tutsi in the hills of Bisesero.
In his capacity as information minister in the interim government between April-
July 1994, Niyitegeka allegedly armed and incited ethnic Hutu to kill Tutsi.
Sebatware described Niyitegeka as a Christian who strictly adhered to the
policies of the Movement for the Defense of the Republic (MDR) party. He
stressed that Niyitegeka could not have participated in genocide.
During cross-examination, prosecution attorney Kenneth Fleming of Australia
challenged Sebatware's credibility, claiming that the witness assisted
'Interahamwe' militiamen during the genocide. The Interahamwe was the youth
wing of the Movement of the Republic for National Development (MRND),
the party that led the coalition government during the violence.
Sebatware denied involvement in the militia group.
"Then why are you not living in your country of birth if you are innocent?"
Fleming asked the witness.
"If you were seeking my death then maybe I could go there I do not want to
throw myself at death, anyone who is on that list is condemned to death in
advance without trial," Sebatware responded.
"A bad government which kills people, which imprisons people without trial,
that is what I am running away from," Sebatware told the court. He is currently
living in Belgium as an asylum seeker.
Fleming pointed out that Sebatware's daughter served as a minister in the
government formed in Rwanda after the genocide.
"She fled the country in 1998 didn't she? Fleming asked. "Yes," responded the
witness.
Sebatware denied Fleming's claim that his daughter fled after she was found
hiding prosecution files of her relatives who were suspected of genocide. "That
is a lie she told me she ran away because they wanted to kill her, just as others
who were also fleeing," Sebatware maintained.
 
"But she was a minister!" Fleming insisted. Sebatware responded: "Is it not true
that there is a former speaker of that government and two ministers as well as
a prime minister who also escaped? Who were also running away from the
country?"
Fleming questioned Sebatware on allegations that his children support
Rwandan Hutu rebel activities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). "I
am not aware of their involvement with the Interahamwe in the Congo
otherwise if it is the case it would be a shame," Sebatware said.
 
The court granted Fleming's request for time to go through additional
documents before continuing with Sebatware's cross- examination, which is
scheduled to resume tomorrow.
After Sebatware, Feargal Kavanagh of Ireland, co-counsel for Niyitegeka,
presented two more witnesses: Michel Nzeyimana and Jean Marie Vianney
Nkezabera. Nzeyimana, a photographer, presented photographs of alleged
crime scenes to the court.
 
Sebatware, Nkezabera and the accused were all members of the Movement
of the Defense of the Republic (MDR).
Nkazabera is expected to testify on the ideology of MDR and Niyitegeka's
role in the party.
The trial is held before Trial Chamber I of the ICTR, comprising Judges
Navanethem Pillay of South Africa (presiding), Erik Mose of Norway and
Andresia Vaz of Senegal.