AS KIGALI’s new signing Haruna Niyonzima has vowed he will win titles with his new club. Haruna, who inked a one-year deal with the City of Kigali side, said he’s also determined with win a recall to the national football ball, Amavubi.
The 29-year-old midfielder returns to Rwanda after spending eight years in the Tanzanian premier league, where he initially played for Young Africans and then SC Simba.
He left SC Simba at the end of his two-year contract last month having previously played for Young Africans since 2011.
The former Rayon Sports and APR forward is one of the nine players who were unveiled by AS Kigali at Kigali Stadium on Wednesday.
“I am happy to be back home after such a long time in Tanzania,” Haruna told reporters on Wednesday.
“AS Kigali are a team with great ambitions, and I am equally an ambitious player. I am here to help the club win titles and perform well in continental football next season.”
Jean de Dieu Mateso’s side will represent the country in the 2019/2020 CAF Confederation Cup following their triumphant 2019 Peace Cup campaign.
They defeated SC Kiyovu 2-1 to clinch the title last week.
Haruna warned the usual big guns in domestic football – the likes of former employers Rayon and APR: “It should not come as a surprise if we win the league title next season. It is going to be one of our main targets.”
The playmaker, one of the most decorated players in the region still in the game, made history last month when he became the first player to win the Tanzania Premier League title five consecutive seasons, having won it three times in a row with Young Africans, between 2015 and 2017, before helping Simba SC to lift the title in 2017/2018 and 2018/2019 seasons.
Prior to his 2011 move to Young Africans, Haruna had previously featured for Rayon Sports for two years (2006-2007) before crossing to bitter rivals APR where he played, from late 2007, and won several titles – including the 2010 CECAFA Kagame Cup.
He started his senior career with Etincelles in 2005.
Besides Haruna, AS Kigali have also completed the acquisition of right-back Michel Rusheshangoga, who was released by APR a fortnight ago, and former APR and Rayon Sports goalkeeper Eric ‘Bakame’ Ndayishimiye.
Ndayishimiye, who helped Rayon to their eighth league title in 2017, returns to Azam Rwanda Premier League after spending last season with Kenyan side AFC Leopards.
Other new arrivals at the club include Rashid Kalisa, from SC Kiyovu, and former Marines star Christian Ishimwe as well as three Cameroonians and one Gabonese player.
AS Kigali’s new foreign signings are; Ekandjoum Essombe Arsitide (Union de Douala, Cameroon) Makon Nlogi Thierry (Coton Sport, Cameroon), Allogo Mba Rick Martel (Manga Sport, Gabon) and Fosso Fabrice Raymond (UMS de Loum, Cameroon).