Eric Bagiruwubusa was selected for surveillance with the Pegasus spyware in 2018. Forbidden Stories was unable to analyze the phone to confirm the infection.
Who is he ?
A stringer for Voice of America since 2014, Eric Bagiruwubusa covers national politics in Rwanda for VOA’s Central Africa Kirundi Kinyarwanda service.
Bagiruwubusa studied journalism and communications at the University of Rwanda and graduated in 2012. Since then, he reported on hot button political issues and has interviewed a number of Rwandan opposition figures who have been imprisoned for opposing the Kagamé regime, including Victoire Ingabire, the former president of the Unified Democratic Forces (UDF) and Théophile Ntirutwa, another FDU figure militant accused of plotting to overthrow the regime, among others.
In 2016, Bagiruwubusa was attacked by a security officer while reporting a story about Kigali street vendors, according to a report from The Rwandan. He still works for VOA, covering courts, current affairs, and politics, and hosts a current affairs talk show called Dusangirijambo.
Rwandan authorities, in a response to a questionnaire sent by Forbidden Stories and its partners, denied having purchased Pegasus, writing: “Rwanda does not use this software system, as previously confirmed in November 2019, and does not possess this technical capability in any form.” NSO Group did not answer Forbidden Stories’ questions on specific targets but said it “will continue to investigate all credible claims of misuse and take appropriate action based on the results of these investigations.”