The appeal of a Rwandan YouTube celebrity who is imprisoned has been denied.
Rwanda’s most famous YouTuber, who had been sentenced to seven years in prison for criticizing the government, has lost his appeal against the conviction.
Dieudonné Niyonsenga, who also goes under the name “Cyuma Hassan,” was convicted in November of forgery, impersonating a journalist, and insulting officials of the government of Rwanda.
He had released films on YouTube in which he accused troops of committing significant violations against slum residents when the country was under a coronavirus lockdown.
Neither the YouTuber nor his attorney made an appearance in the courtroom. His father was in attendance for the verdict, which affirmed the sentence since no new evidence had been presented in the case.
Human Rights Watch accused Rwanda of restricting freedom of expression earlier this week and demanded for the immediate release of Niyonsenga and other bloggers, activists, and journalists detained in the country.
The administration disregarded the concerns made by the rights organization, claiming that everyone was treated equally under the law.