Rwanda: Who Is Juvenal Marizamunda, Rwanda’s 11th Minister of Defence?

In his free time, Rwanda’s new Minister of Defence, Juvenal Marizamunda, 58, is an avid APR and Arsenal fan who also enjoys following and watching Spanish giants Barcelona or Olympique de Marseille, in the top tier of French football.

Marizamunda who is set to swear in as the 11th Minister for Defence since Rwanda became independent in 1962 previously served in different capacities in security and law-enforcing institutions including the Rwanda Defence Force (RDF), the Rwanda National Police (RNP), and the Rwanda Correctional Services (RCS).

He takes over from Maj. Gen. Albert Murasira who had served in the position since October 2018. Unlike his predecessor, Marizamunda plays no chess. He is a football fan who loves jogging to keep fit.

Marizamunda, a father of four – two girls and two boys – was appointed as the new Minister of Defence, on June 5. Born on December 2, 1965, in Nyamagabe District, Southern Province, he is married to Seraphine Nyirasafari.

He was, until his new appointment, the Commissioner General for Rwanda Correctional Service (RCS).

In April 2021, Marizamunda replaced Brig Gen George Rwigamba who had headed the RCS since 2016.

Until his 2021 appointment, he was the Deputy Commissioner General of Police in charge of Administration and Finance, a position he had held since June 2014.

He joined the military in 1986 and was commissioned as Second Lieutenant in 1990. In the years that followed, he held various command appointments from platoon to battalion level as well as staff responsibilities at battalion level and at Defence Headquarters. He once served as the Acting Head of the Department of Peace Support Operations at RDF Headquarters.