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On 3 November 2014, the Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA), the national body mandated with regulating the media, among other responsibilities, established an independent Committee of Inquiry to look into the allegations brought to its attention arising from the BBC’s documentary titled “Rwanda’s Untold Story” aired on 1 October 2014 on BBC2 in the United Kingdom.

The Committee was given the task to examine a number of complaints by Rwandans against the BBC’s conduct in the production of the aforementioned documentary and transgressions, some spanning a number of years, in its Kinyarwanda programs broadcast on the FM frequency in Rwanda. Overall, the Committee’s mandate was to look into:

– Whether the BBC abused press freedom and free speech;
– Whether the BBC was in compliance with its own journalistic standards;
– Whether there was deliberate misconduct on the part of the producers of the documentary and the BBC in airing the documentary
– Whether there were violations of Rwandan law on the part of the BBC
– Whether there were violations with regards to the particular offenses of genocide denial and revisionism, as well as those inciting hatred and divisionism
– Whether there were previous journalistic transgressions committed by the BBC’s Kinyarwanda broadcasts
– Whether there was a breach of agreement on the part of the BBC in relation to the license it had been granted to broadcast its radio programmes on the FM frequencies in Rwanda

Over a period of four months, the committee collected evidence from a wide range of sources and heard from expert witnesses. The committee delivered its report to the Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority on 28 February 2015. You can read the executive summary here and the full report here.

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