As Caesar lov'd me, I weep for him; as he was fortunate, I rejoice at it; as he was valiant, I honor him, but, as he was ambitious, I slew him."
The characters in this story are purely fictional they bear no relation or connection to persons living or deceased.
Col. Rwakitata watched as Lieutenant Mugabe led the rather anxious VIP to his seat, he consulted the sector by sector security detail that he had committed to memory which if it served him correctly said Lieutenant Mugabe was head of sector D situated outside the field. He stepped down from the hood of the G-series and proceeded to the ‘radio shack’, this was actually a mobile com van that contained some of the most sophisticated communications control apparatus from assigning satellite protocols to electronic frequency monitors.
Inside the shack seated behind a wall of computer screens and radio equipment was a young Seargeant who didn’t even turn when the colonel entered, his eyes remained glued to the screen as he monitored frequencies and coms.
“Sergeant Kagonyera, who ordered sector swaps for D?” he barked.
The Sergeant punched a few keys and without taking his eyes of the screens said “Maj. Kutale ordered the swaps he moved Lt. Mugabe to A and assigned captain Kakande to D”
“What happened to Mugisha in D?”
“Got the big M” still his eyes never left the screens.
“Son of a bitch” Rwakitata cursed under his breath, “put me through to Kutale”
The sergeant punched some more keys and in a few seconds Maj. Kutale’s voice boomed on the speakers “Kutale here.”
“Did you authorized sector swaps?” Rwakitata spat.
“Yes, Lieutenant Mugisha’s got malaria, he’s at IHK.”
“Very well, next time run all swaps by me first”
The pressure of the revolver pressed against his temple eased and he turned his head to look at his captor through his half open swollen eyes, his entire body ached from the torture he had had to endure for the past….he had lost track of time. His tormentor kept the gun aimed at his head.
Maj. Kutale was strapped into a chair and could barely move his arms and legs, he spoke through his bloody lips, “you got what you wanted now let me go.”
“Not just yet Major not just yet” his captor replied through the ski mask.
Rwakitata was now on edge, he still couldn’t put a finger on what was wrong but his gut told him that his well laid security plan was under threat, though there was no plausible reason why, Maj. Kutale was one of his most trusted men, he’d hand picked the man himself.
As he was stepping out of the shack the young Sergeant let out a muffled shout “Colonel”
The Colonel paused in his tracks turning his head “What” he said irritably.
“The combat analyzer programme just detected a duress code in the phone call”
“Impossible,” Rwakitata retorted, “I know all duress codes by heart”
“Sir” the sergeant said emphatically, “this wasn’t a PGB code.”
“What?” the colonel was now visibly irritated.
"It was RPA." Sgt. Kagonyera replied.
“Rwandan army? Are you playing games with me sergeant?”
“No, sir”, the sergeant replied nervously, his usually unruffled manner gone, “take a look.”
The combat analyzer programme had indeed picked up an RPA duress code and Rwakitata had missed it because he was of course PGB.
According to the sergeant, in the RPA the use of abbreviations like IHK and addressing superior officers by their titles instead of ‘sir’ was a clear indication that they were communicating under duress.
"But why RPA?" Rwakitata mused.
"He could have intel that PGB is compromised."
“Call him up again.”
The sergeant pressed a key on one of his numerous keyboards which redialed Kutale’s number, after a few brief seconds a busy tone sounded on the speakers.
The convoy snaked onto the School field moving at a slow 4kph, soldiers scurried into position as they assumed their security roles. A handful of government officials headed by the army commander and the VP stood at attention before the VIP pavilion.
As the convoy came to a halt several plain clothed bodyguards hopped out of the land cruisers and stood in formation around the lead limousine, one of them hurried to open the door.
President Mubeseni stepped out of the limo and walked slowly to the welcoming committee, he was dressed in a grey suit and perched on his head was the trade mark hat of the same color.
The president shook hands with the VP and exchanged salutes with the army commander, after exchanging a few pleasantries with the welcoming committee he was led to the pavilion where two large arm chairs were waiting in the front row, the rest of the guests already seated inside the pavilion stood up respectfully as the president was led to his seat.
Rwakitata cursed again and ordered the sergeant to redial but they kept getting the same irritating busy tone.
He pressed a button on his earpiece “Captain, give me status.”
Captain Rusoze who sat in the G-series with a lap top replied, “President seated with Lt. Baguma and Lt. Kavuma right behind him, Sat photos indicate field secure and infra red reconfirmation sweep completes in 3 minutes.
“Keep me updated and assign somemone from the Alpha team to watch Mugabe, if he so much as farts I wan't to know it.”
Rwakitata was one hundred percent certain no one could get anywhere near the president without alerting suspicion, but why would they hold Kutale or switch sector heads? And if the PGB was indeed compromised as sergeant Kagonyera had implied then he had some cleaning up to do but that would come later, right now he had scant little to go on, all he had was a duress code that wasn’t even Ugandan and a Major he couldn’t reach. There were more questions than he had answers for and he painfully knew that if there was indeed a threat on the president’s life he had to evacuate immediately but that came with its downside, mainly if the threat proved to be false he might find his promising career taking a nosedive.
Final Episode webs on Monday at 4:00pm