Rwanda names new FM, intelligence boss, ahead of polls

Rwanda President Paul Kagame. PHOTO | COURTESY

What you need to know:

  • Changes were also made at the top of several other ministries including finance and environment.

Kigali. Rwanda has appointed a new foreign minister and intelligence chief in a reshuffle announced a month before national polls that long-time leader Paul Kagame is widely expected to win.

Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente said in a statement late Wednesday that Olivier Nduhungirehe, formerly Rwanda's ambassador to the Netherlands, had been appointed foreign minister.

He replaces veteran politician Vincent Biruta, who has been named interior minister.

Former prosecutor general Aimable Havugiyaremye was also named as the new secretary general of the National Intelligence and Security Service, the first time a civilian will head the agency.

He replaces Brigadier General Joseph Nzabamwita who has been in the position since 2016, according to local media, and who will become senior security adviser in the office of the president.

In a statement on X late Wednesday, Nduhungirehe thanked Kagame for the opportunity.

"I commit to use my diplomatic and political experience, as well as my energy to strengthen Rwanda's bilateral and multilateral relations," he said.

Changes were also made at the top of several other ministries including finance and environment.

Rwanda is gearing up for presidential and parliamentary elections on July 15.

Only two candidates have been approved to run against Kagame, according to a provisional list released earlier this month.

Kagame, Rwanda's de facto ruler since the 1994 genocide and president since 2000, is bidding for a fourth term in office.