Rwandan opposition activist gunned down in South Africa

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A Rwandan opposition figure exiled in South Africa was on Sunday shot dead in Cape Town, his party said, calling the attack an “assassination”.

Seif Bamporiki, 49, who was the Rwanda National Congress (RNC) coordinator in South Africa, was killed as he delivered furniture in the crime-ridden township of Nyanga.

While the motive for his murder is still unclear, RNC spokesperson Etienne Mutabazi told AFP the method mirrored past politically-motivated attacks.

The killing “was executed in a similar modus operandi of luring the victim in a compromising and insecure environment for assassination,” he said.

Mutabazi was referring to past attacks on Rwandan dissidents in South Africa including ex-intelligence chief Patrick Karegeya, whose body was found strangled in his room in a luxury hotel on January 1, 2014.

Bamporiki and his colleague from a pawn shop were accosted by two gun-toting assailants as they waited for a client who had disembarked from their vehicle to collect money to pay for a bed he had bought.

The client had “been looking for him for quite a while”, Mutabazi said. “Even on Saturday, that particular individual came to the shop and said only Bamporiki could serve him.”

The attackers made off with the activist’s pick-up truck and money, leaving his body on the ground.

No arrests have been made so far.

Another Rwandan exile, former general Kayumba Nyamwasa, survived two assassination attempts.

Pretoria described one of those, in June 2010 in South Africa, as an attack by foreign security operatives.