August 31, 2023

Rwanda retires 12 generals, Cameroon reshuffles officers after Gabon coup

Rwanda retires 12 generals, Cameroon reshuffles officers after Gabon coup

President Paul Biya of Cameroon and President Paul Kagame of Rwanda

By Biodun Busari

Two of the long-serving African leaders – Paul Biya and Paul Kagame – made changes in their respective Cameroonian and Rwandan military formations on Wednesday.

The changes are coming on the heels of the recent coup that ousted their counterpart, Ali Bongo in Gabon.

Some military officers appeared on national television to announce the ouster of Bongo as the Gabonese leader who has been in power since 2009.

In what appeared as panic that gripped the leaders of the African continent, Kagame retired 12 generals and other officers in the Rwandan Defence Force (RDF).

According to a statement on Wednesday, RDF said Kagame has retired 83 military personnel including 12 generals.

The affected officers were General James Kabarebe, General Fred Ibingira, Lt. Gen Charles Kayonga, Lt Gen Frank Mushyo Kamanzi, Maj Gen Martin Nzaramba, and Major General Eric Murokore.

Others are Major General Augustin Turagara, Major General Charles Karamba, Major General Albert Murasira, Brigadier General Chris Murari, Brigadier General Didace Ndahiro, Brigadier General Emmanuel Ndahiro.

In a similar vein, Biya has made changes to Cameroon’s Ministry of Defence as he announced reshuffling the Central African country’s defence ministry.

“Decree appointing officials to the Ministry of Defence,” he wrote on Twitter, now known as X.

Biya, 90, is one of the longest-serving African leaders who grabbed power in a coup d’etat in 1982.

Also, 65-year-old Kagame assumed office in 2000, and in 2015, Rwanda’s constitution was altered to allow him to remain president until 2034.