Painting by Cheri Samba

Lokuta eyaka na ascenseur, kasi vérité eyei na escalier mpe ekomi. Lies come up in the elevator; the truth takes the stairs but gets here eventually. - Koffi Olomide

Ésthetique eboma vélo. Aesthetics will kill a bicycle. - Felix Wazekwa

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Can you say that again, Mr. Ntsaluba?

I had been told that South Africa was handling the Kayumba assassination attempt with secrecy and delicacy. Right. Until this afternoon, when a senior diplomat fell victim to a serious case of foot-in-mouth syndrome.

Mr. Ayanda Ntsaluba, the director general in the foreign ministry, told reporters that "foreign security operatives" were involved in the shooting of General Kayumba on June 19 in Johannesburg. Aha! So they have confirmed the suspicions that the Rwandan government was behind it!

Not so fast. The silver-tongued Ntsaluba continued: "[This matter] also involves a country with which we have good and strong diplomatic relations," he said. "This why we will not make a determination about where the suspected attackers of General Nyamwasa come from."

So they might have come from Kyrgyzstan? Montenegro?

"We want to be cautious and we are not pointing an accusing finger at any country," Ntsaluba said.

Of course, because security operatives from any number of countries could have wanted to kill General Kayumba.

After that, Mr. Ntsaluba's coherence began to crumble altogether.

"It is accepted practice that the foreign missions of any country has fully declared intelligence and security operatives," he said. "If people from another country operate clandestinely, that is an entirely different dimension."

"They must not get caught because that compounds relations between countries," he added. "It cannot be taken lightly because that is subverting the stability of a country."

So it is OK if foreign spies carry out assassinations as long as they don't get caught? I don't get it. But I do think that the South Africa government has just confirmed that the Rwandan government was behind the assassination. Merci, M. Ntsaluba.

1 comment:

Tim Ogden said...

You missed that he's saying that it would also be OK "fully declared intelligence and security operatives" had carried out an assassination.

To recap: it's only wrong if assassinations are done by undeclared agents who get caught. All other scenarios are fine

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