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Rwanda’s Kagame Fires Reserve Force Chief Gen Fred Ibingira

Rwandan President Paul Kagame has sacked the long-serving Commander of the Reserve Force, Gen Fred Ibingira.

No reason has been given for the firing of the officer who was in January elevated to the rank of General from Lieutenant General.

According to a statement from the Ministry of Defence, “The President and Commander-in-Chief of the Rwanda Defence Force (Paul Kagame) has appointed Maj Gen Aloys Muganga as Acting Reserve Force Chief of Staff (RFCOS).”

“He replaces Gen Fred Ibingira who has been holding the position since 2010.”

Muganga was recently promoted from the rank of Brigadier to Major General.

The development comes high on the heels of several reshuffles in the Rwanda Defence Force that have seen top officers transferred from influential positions including the long-serving Minister of Defence, Gen James Kabarebe.

ChimpReports understands the changes in the armed forces could be aimed at paving way for the youthful commanders to take charge of defence as the country moves to deal with evolving security threats.

In his New Year message, Kagame encouraged the armed forces to “remain focused and vigilant,” as they can’t expect the year to be less challenging and instead warned them that global and regional dynamics will always tend to evolve in ways that bring new security challenges, some of which need to be confronted at very short notice.

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Who is Ibingira

Gen Ibingira completed his Ordinary Level at Gisozi Senior Secondary School in Uganda.

Commissioned in 1987, Ibingira served as Platoon Commander; Company Commander; and Deputy Battalion Commander of 7 Battalion.

During the RPF war of liberation; Ibingira served as Deputy Battalion Commander Task Force A in 1990.

In 1991, Ibingira served as Commander of 7th Battalion and A Mobile Force before being elevated Deputy Operational Commander, Mutara Sector in 1992.

In 1993, Ibingira served as Operation Commander 157 Mobile Force and Vice President RPA Court Martial.

He would later serve as Commander of several Brigades 301, 402.

From 2003 to 2010, Ibingira was Division Commander 1 Div., a post he held until he was appointed Reserve Force Chief of Staff.

He is a recipient of the National Liberation Medal, Campaign against Genocide medal, Foreign Campaign Medal, Presidential Inauguration Medal, Command Service Ribbon, Combat Action Ribbon and the Community Service Ribbon.

It remains unclear if he will follow in the footsteps of his comrades who have retired from the military service or take up a new responsibility.

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