At 2:09am on Monday, August 8, a former Rwandan soldier, Reni Rutagungira was enjoying drinks at Bahamas Bar & Accommodation nightspot when hell broke loose.
About an hour earlier, Reni as he is fondly known, had been surrounded by unknown agents.
The agents, according to the CCTV video footage exclusively obtained by ChimpReports, took seats at the bar counter before ordering for soft drinks.
An unidentified man then approached the agents and pointed at the spot where Reni was seated having drinks with a friend known as Ahmed Kalekezi.
Suddenly, a man wearing a leather jacket and cap entered the bar and took a close observation of the area where Reni was seated.
He was led by the security guard at the bar.
Sources told ChimpReports this man is an army officer at the rank of Captain.
After about 15 seconds, the ‘Captain’ walked out.
The surveillance continued until the agents decided to strike.
According to the video footage, the agents could have feared a protracted battle with Reni hence devising a plot to hoodwink him.
A person was sent to inform Reni that someone wanted to talk to him.
As he walked out of the bar, little did Reni realise he was falling into a well-laid trap. The operation appeared well-rehearsed and sophisticated.
As soon as Reni walked out, the two agents who were monitoring him immediately left the counter before grabbing their target.
Helped by the ‘Captain’, the two agents forcefully dragged Reni to a waiting Toyota Corolla brand car which immediately left the scene. Reni tried to put up resistance only to be overpowered by the agents.
Reni Wife Speaks Out
According to Reni’s wife, Jacinta Dusangeyezu, her husband’s friends said the car in which Reni was whisked away is registered as UAT 694T.
In an interview with ChimpReports, Dusangeyezu said she received a call at around 3:00am that her husband was kidnapped.
She rushed to Old Kampala Police Station where she recorded a statement, alleging that the Diaspora-based Rwanda National Congress (RNC) party members could be responsible for the kidnap.
Dusangeyezu further stated in her statement that Reni had refused to join RNC, a party led by renegade Rwandan military general and former Chief of Defence Staff, Kayumba Nyamwasa.
She also told detectives at Old Kampala Police Station that an armed army officer at the rank of Captain presented his identity card to the bar’s security guard who led him to where Reni was seated.
The mother was visibly heartbroken and terrified.
“Our two kids and I are really going through a hard time since the kidnap of my husband who was the sole provider of the family,” said Dusangeyezu, adding, “We have tried everything possible to find him in vain.”
Uganda authorities explain
The mastermind of the operation remains unclear.
Uganda Police spokesperson Asan Kasingye told the media that police were investigating the incident.
He today said the law enforcement body did not have any update on the matter.
The Deputy UPDF spokesperson, Lt Col Deo Akiiki said the army was not aware about the whereabouts of Reni.
“I saw it on social media,” said Akiiki, who was enroute to Kazo, western Uganda for the burial ceremony of Brig Kyabihende.
Asked whether the UPDF was involved in the operation, Akiiki responded: “We don’t kidnap people. I have not had any information that we were involved. So far, I am as uninformed as you are.”
He promised to call us upon obtaining information related to the case but had not done so by the time we posted this story on Thursday afternoon.
We were unable to reach the Chief of Military Intelligence, Col Abel Kandiho for comment.
Cases of former Rwandan soldiers being captured in Uganda have been common in recent years.
Human rights groups have since pointed a finger at Rwanda security services.
Rwanda Police chief, Emmanuel Gasana told this investigative website that they were not involved in the operation.
He said there was “no way Rwanda can be implicated in this kind of operation in another country.”
Gasana referred us to Rwanda’s High Commission in Kampala for detailed information.
Contacted, Rwanda’s High Commissioner to Uganda, Amb Frank Mugambage said he had received information about Reni’s kidnap.
“Yes, we got information. We are trying to understand what happened,” said Mugambage.
He said police obtained the CCTV footage of what transpired at the bar which he said should help in investigations.
A separate investigation carried out by this website indicates that Uganda’s security services had for long suspected Reni of being involved in hunting down renegade Rwandan soldiers and suspected subversive elements in Uganda.
Reni, according to security sources, is also suspected of being part of shootings in different parts of Uganda.
“Reni claims he fled Rwanda due to harassment of security services. But he has been going to Rwanda for business,” said a high ranking security official who preferred anonymity so as to speak freely.
Ugandan police detectives are investigating the ‘disappearance’ case under reference number SD 62/07/08/2017.