Rwanda has ruled out an external inquiry into the death of popular gospel singer Kizito Mihigo, saying the country has competent and qualified institutions to carry out professional investigations.
This follows multiple calls from human rights watchdogs that Rwanda should allow an impartial inquiry and remove doubts about the circumstances under which Mihigo died.
“What those watchdogs are saying is simply their wishes but we have competent and independent organs that can do that,” Ms Marie Michelle Umuhoza, Spokesperson of Rwanda Investigative Bureau told The East African.
“Besides that, Rwanda is a sovereign country and the investigations are being carried out in private as the law on criminal procedure requires.”
Police on Monday announced that the 38-year-old musician committed suicide while in detention at Remera Police Station, three days after he was arrested as he attempted to flee the country through a porous border to Burundi.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) released a statement shortly after his death saying the official account of a suicide was “expected to be met with scepticism” and called for an investigation to examine the possibility that Mihigo could have been “ill-treated or killed during custody.”