The main organizer of the Rwandan beauty pageant dubbed Miss Rwanda, Dieudonne Ishimwe, has been cleared of charges of sexual misconduct. A court in Kigali dropped rape charges against Ishimwe citing insufficient evidence. However, the judge said the suspect would face charges of soliciting sexual favours and sexual harassment.
Dieudonne Ishimwe, 36, a well-known entertainer and former musician known as Prince Kid, was arrested on April 27. Mr. Ishimwe was accused of rape, soliciting, or offering sexual favours and harassment against the pageant contesters. According to Rwandan broadcaster Thierry Murangira, the 36-year-old is suspected of assaulting “former Miss Rwanda contestants” on several occasions.
Following the accusations and arrest of its organizer, the Rwandan government suspended the Miss Rwanda 2022 pageant. The reported arrest of Dieudonne Ishimwe set the social media landscape ablaze in the East African country with the hashtag #miss Rwanda leading the trend on social media platforms. The case continues to attract lots of attention particularly as the judge said the suspect would still face the other charges of soliciting sexual favours and sexual harassment.
Ishimwe who denies all the charges has been denied bail.