According to a scheduling order issued on Monday, the defence lawyers will start to address the Chamber, followed by the prosecutor, who has not lodged any appeal in the case commonly known as Government II.
In the case, Mugenzi, then minister of Trade and Mugiraneza, who headed the Public Service ministry, have appealed against the lower court’s judgment delivered on September 30, 2011. The two were convicted of conspiracy to commit genocide and direct and public incitement to commit genocide and sentenced to 30 years imprisonment each.
Judges in the first instance found them responsible for their role in removing the prefect of Butare (South Rwanda) on April 17, 1994, and replacing him two days later. They concluded that the dismissal of prefect Jean-Baptiste Habyarimana was intended to undermine the resistance to the genocide in Butare prefecture, leading to massacres.
The duo was charged jointly with two other ex-ministers, Casimir Bizimungu (Health) and Jérome Bicamumpaka (Foreign Affairs), who were acquitted for insufficient evidence.