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Rwanda ‘opens’ Katuna border post

Truck at the Katuna border earlier. PHOTO MEDIA CENTRE UG

Kabale, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Uganda-Rwanda border at Katuna has been opened to allow movement of heavy trucks, in what Rwanda says will be to try its one-stop-border infrastructure.

In a statement issued last night, Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) said the area will only be open from today June 10, 2019, to June 22, 2019.

“Reference is made to Rwanda Transport Development Agency letter dated June 7, 2019, which expresses the need to carry out trials for heavy trucks movement on Gatuna [Katuna] OSBP for a period of two weeks from 10th to 22nd June 2019 and assess the operationalization of the constructed works and equipment before the reception of works,” the letter read in part.

The Katuna border was closed in February 2019 in what was interpreted as a result of the row between Uganda and Rwanda. During that time, Ugandan traders were advised to use the Kyanika and Kagitumba border posts to enter Rwanda.

Attempts by the Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) to explain that the closure was due to the construction works ongoing were quickly thwarted by tweets and open disdain from top Rwandan officials, including the Foreign Affairs Minister who indicated the closure was due to a row with Uganda.

Rwandan officials accused Uganda of supporting rebels trying to overthrow the Kigali regime, an accusation Kampala has consistently denied. Kigali also issued a travel advisory to its citizens not to go to Uganda.

Addressing diplomats in Kampala on the Rwanda-Uganda row, Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kutesa said the February closure of the border had taken Uganda by surprise. He also said Rwandan security operatives were entering Uganda illegally.

Trade between the two countries has since fallen by more than 85 per cent since the February closure.

Meanwhile, at an OSBP, passengers, cargo and vehicles stop just once to process border crossing formalities in order to exit one partner state and enter the other. All procedures and processing of documentation for goods and passengers are carried out in a single clearance hall for exit and entry.

Rwanda also says its facility even when it has been completed, it will not be effective since Uganda has not finished construction in its side of the border.

Rwanda’s The New Times, a government newspaper, reported last month that Jean de Dieu Uwihanganye, the Rwanda minister of state for transport, said: “Completion of works is one thing but functioning is another. For One-Stop-Border Post to function, it has to be both sides. So what about the other [Ugandan] side”.   It is still not clear when the border will open fully.

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11 comments

  1. A poor weak country should never in the first place close boarders for emotional reasons. Rwanda needs to know that Uganda can do without Rwanda trade. It has had to kill their people fleeing the biting hunger. But for what? Pure eagle and being emotive. You see Uganda is really a powerful country which has survived different hard times even under idi amani. But now under Museven uganda is much more stronger economically and militariry. Uganda should be respected because it is the home of every African who wants to live in peace and personal development.

    • Oh dear @kayumba you deserve pity. What do you take trade to be? On what basis do you determine the strength of Uganda by the hard times Uganda has survived from Amin’s regime and how do you compare the hard times, time taken to get out of them, current status of governance, socioeconomic and political development of the two countries in question??????

      You need to get yourself informed and updated accordingly that Rwanda is a sovereign state that is governed, protected, visionary, stable …. and not a district of Uganda that has to be miserably needy like it is in many chaotically governed districts of Uganda.

    • Bikocyanyi Makara

      Kayumba
      No doubt you are less informed that’s why you reason like a dead person. Uganda is currently ranked among the top ten corrupt countries in the World. Criminal and death rates Uganda is also ranked among the top in the world.

    • Thank you my brother for ur good strongest word and meaningfully Be blessed

  2. I think you don’t know what u talking about.

  3. Well, it’s good,but both countries should end hostility and begin again to live in harmony as it has been for many years ago.

  4. What an enigma!

    In other words, the wounds of murder do not heal. With two dead and buried on each side of the border; what difference would it have made if the border was not closed?

  5. @David each country can do without the other but 2together can do better and achieve more. Please recover soon.

  6. Uganda and rwanda has sisters for good yrs discharging firearms wil not not befit all its pple instead of using dialog and comeout with final soln.

  7. Phong cách thiết kế nội thất gỗ việt độc đáo.

  8. Rút ngắn thời gian, ít tốn sức lao động.

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