The Miss Rwanda pageant has been suspended following the April arrest of its organizer on suspicion of sexual assault, Rwanda’s ministry of youth and culture has announced.
The organizer of the contest, Dieudonné Ishimwe, a 36-year-old former musician known as Prince Kid, was arrested on April 27 for “crimes related to sexual assault”, according to the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB), the state police. A statement from the ministry released on Monday said that “Miss Rwanda’s beauty pageant is suspended pending the results of investigations” into Ishimwe.
Director of Rwanda Inspiration Backup, the company that organizes the annual Miss Rwanda pageant, Ishimwe is suspected of assault “on former Miss Rwanda contestants” several times, told AFP a spokesman for the RIB, Thierry Murangira, at the time of his arrest. A week earlier, the organization had announced the resignation of an ex-Miss Rwanda from her position as communications director after four years of collaboration.
The Miss Rwanda pageant, which bills itself as East Africa’s biggest beauty pageant, has been included in the Miss World competition since 2016.