Where is “Cuma”?

Since his abduction by unknown people on Wednesday, November 20, the whereabouts of Berchmans Misago also known as “Cuma”, a resident of Ntahangwa commune in Bujumbura city, are still unknown. This FNL party veteran very close to Agathon Rwasa, the president of CNL party, was very influential in this party. His disappearance causes concerns. Iwacu conducted an investigation.

Since Wednesday, November 20th, the whereabouts of Berchmans Misago are still unknown.

The few fruit sellers who still remained, this Wednesday around 5 pm, at the small market of Karama, on the National Road 1 not far from ”Iwabo w’abantu” bar-restaurant, will never forget ” this scene of terror ”.

They say: “This man had just arrived here. He had not spent more than 5 minutes. Obviously, he was from work. He stopped to buy sweet potatoes. While he was bargaining with a woman, two men in military uniform approached. We thought they were passing by, patrolling as usual. In the meantime, a Toyota car of TI type with tinted windows arrived. Nobody got off. But from inside, we heard a voice: Catch him. He is the one.”

Cuma was abducted in the eyes of passers-by. These “soldiers” grabbed him and threw him into the TI type car. According to these traders, he tried to defend himself, to no avail. “The car drove off very quickly. As we were already in panic, we could not write down the plate number “…

According to information gathered from his relatives, Berchmans Misago was warned during the day of an attempt to kidnap him: “He had been followed since morning. His friends had warned him that people had been watching over him. They had suggested him to find companions in his movements for more security”.

But, self confident, he took this warning for granted. Thus, as usual, after his work at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, around 5pm, he went, all alone, without any concern, to the bus stop in Bujumbura city center. He took the Mirango-Rond-Point bus to get home.
He could not succeed. He had been watched over for quite some time. Others were waiting to kidnap him.

Reliable sources speak of a skillfully-planned abduction. The team of abductors, they say, was divided into three groups. The first group had to follow Cuma’s movements from the time he left his workplace. “They even took the same bus as him.” The other group was waiting for him in a bend after he got off the bus. “It’s this group which was composed of men in military uniform who caught him in Karama.” The last group stayed in the vehicle that took him away.

To be able to eliminate Agathon Rwasa?

Berchmans Misago fought alongside Agathon Rwasa, the historic leader of the National Liberation Forces, Palipehutu-FNL. After a peace deal was signed in 2008, he was demobilized. However, he remained one of the bodyguards of his former rebel leader. “He has been living at his home for a long time,” says a former war companion.

A young man who played the same role as him at Agathon Rwasa’s house spoke of a “bodyguard dedicated” to his leader. “Berchmans Misago has foiled several attempts to assassinate Agathon Rwasa,” he says, referring to “agents of this guard who were often corrupted to poison their leader but all their plans have always been thwarted by this faithful and valiant bodyguard.” According to him, Cuma would never have accepted money to betray his beloved chief.

In addition to being loyal to his boss, Berchmans Misago would have undermined many plans for the “Nyakurisation”(division) of CNL party led by Agathon Rwasa since its approval in February 2020. “Whenever there was an information about a possible and imminent” Nyakurisation” plan, he committed himself body and soul to preventing it from succeeding,” says E.N, a CNL activist close to leaders of this party at the national level. Except the national boss, he had no respect for any other personality in the party. “Whatever the status of the activist suspected in this plan, they were to be questioned before a team of young people led by Cuma,” says E.N, adding that Cuma was a real obstacle for those who wish CNL party no good.

A meeting of all the dangers?

The situation was so until the end of last October. According to a source, at the beginning of November, after a meeting that brought together the Imbonerakure, intelligence agents and the police, seven names (including Berchmans Misago) were listed on an assassination plan targeting ultimately Agathon Rwasa.

Our sources, who say they got this information from an intelligence service agent, mention Berchmans Misago, Claude, Richard, Matata, Innocent, a certain Justin (leader of a team of producers producing songs praising CNL party and its boss) and MP Bernard Ndayisenga. The most targeted people are members of CNL party who head the intelligence service on the security of the president of their party at the national level, especially during his travels.
The meeting took place in a bar located in Kamenge neighborhood of Ntahangwa commune in Bujumbura city. Participants would have set up a commission charged with the execution of the conclusions of the meeting: “Gutekera mu magunira” (” Packing in bags”) these targeted people would be the mission entrusted to the commission.

Our sources say that the intelligence agent who “gave away this secret” indicated that the commission is of the opinion that the elimination of these “inconvenient elements” would allow either the elimination of Agathon Rwasa or the destruction of his party. For them, the kidnapping of Cuma would be only one step in the process of the execution of this plan…

Before the kidnapping of Cuma, the failure to arrest Matata

Térence Manirambona: “Investigations should be conducted so that the truth about his abduction be known.”

The abduction of Berchmans Misago caused more concern as it happened 10 days after an attempted arrest against Matata, one of the people mentioned in the plan.

He escaped an arrest on Sunday, November 10 at his home in Gatumba, reveal our sources. “Some criminals had dropped weapons near his building site. And then, the police come to arrest him on the pretext of having discovered weapons at his building site”.

But that day, he was not in Bujumbura. So, he was able escape. He subsequently received several death threats via his phone, what got him into panic.
According to the different sources, after the disappearance of Berchmans Misago, Matata like all the others mentioned in that plan, thus went into hiding.

The National Congress for Liberty, CNL, calls on competent bodies to carry out investigations without delay. “Investigations should be conducted so that the truth about this abduction be known,” said Térence Manirambona, spokesman for the party, stressing the importance of reassuring the family of Berchmans Misago.

According to him, the CNL belatedly realized that Mr Misago had gone missing. “Before, we thought he would have gone to see his family in Gitega central province. We had to ask his wife to tell us about his disappearance. The CNL spokesman says that a team delegated by the party spared no effort to find theirs but to no avail. “We searched in all the dungeons, the intelligence services, in vain,” said Manirambona adding that the party will soon bring the case to the police.

The national police do not say much about this case. Moïse Nkurunziza, deputy spokesman for the Ministry of Public Security, calls on the family of Berchmans Misago to go to the police. In the meantime, according to the information gathered, the Misago family is afraid to complain. “His wife would be fearing for her security.”

At the time when young people from the ruling party are mentioned in the elimination plan of Inyankamugayo (members of CNL party), the CNDD-FDD party communications officer says that her party cannot comment on that case.

Nancy Ninette Mutoni recommends that we look for this information at the administration level. “We cannot get into this confrontation that you want to provoke between the parties. If something happens in any locality, there is an administrative official who should be asked. “