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Uganda To Rwanda: We Don’t Conduct Our Diplomatic Relations In The Media

Uganda doesn’t conduct its diplomatic relations with other countries in the media like the case is with the Rwandan, the Ugandan Government has said.

This is after Rwanda President, Paul Kagame attributed the tensions between the two nations on Ugandan government listening to rumors from people who are opposing the Rwandan government and are only looking for economic gains.

Uganda’s position was made by Ofwono Opondo, Government Spokesperson today during the weekly cabinet press briefing at Uganda Media Centre where he even denied reported tensions between the two nations.

Opondo said that Uganda has taken a cautious position never to conduct diplomatic relationships through the media, adding that its laughable for anyone to suggest government doesn’t have mechanisms to process information it picks and has to rely on rumors.

“The Government of Uganda has taken a very cautious decision of not conducting diplomatic foreign relations between our country and any other country through the media. We leave that to the officials of Rwandan Government if they want to conduct diplomatic relations via the media, it is their choice,” Ofwono said.

He added that the Government of Uganda doesn’t listen to rumours from dissidents in other parts of the world who have disagreed with their countries.

 “It is laughable that the Government of Uganda doesn’t have institutional mechanisms to pick and process information and simply relies on rumours perhaps Rwanda. If that were to be the case, the Government of Uganda would be at logger heads with every Government around the world because in each of these countries around the world, there are people who bad mouth the Government to Uganda,” he added.

He refuted claims of rift between Uganda and Rwanda arguing that a few weeks back, President Yoweri Museveni met with Kagame during the African union summit and if there were any problems they would have been brought to the attention of the President.

“We still consider that we have very good relations with Government of Rwanda, people of Rwanda, country Rwanda and we shall not move away from our African stance of supporting African brothers and sisters who may be in trouble,” said Opondo.  

It should be noted that in his interview with the East African Newspaper, President Kagame said relations between Uganda and Rwanda are not improving because of reluctance to solve the differences, adding that the two nations have had discussions over the rift for two years.

“It is very intriguing to find that, even with the history (between the two countries) and a good foundation, we have something like this going on. And it goes on every day, even as we speak. It is hard to just put it in one word, or even a few words. All I can say is that it’s a matter that can be resolved. That must be resolved. Because the alternative is not something that we should even be thinking about, or entertaining,” said President Kagame, who is the chairman of the East African Community.

The East African quoted the Rwandan leader linking a group of Rwandan dissidents in South Africa and his troubles with Uganda, with President Kagame, accusing Uganda of choosing to listen to the dissidents, and act against Rwanda based on the information from the group.

The dissidents, Kagame said, are soliciting Uganda’s support in their plans to destabilise Rwanda. Although he did not name the group, a senior official told The EastAfrican that the dissidents are led by Lt-Gen Kayumba Nyamwasa, a former chief of staff of the Rwandan Army.

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