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KAGAME: The unbelievable truth

 

How ignorance and prejudice combine to undermine the truth about Kagame running for president this year

Rwanda | Andrew M. Mwenda | The Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) on June 17 nominated Paul Kagame as its presidential candidate in this year’s elections. Although he was unopposed, the RPF still conducted a secret ballot to elect him. Out of 1930 delegates, 1929 voted for Kagame, one vote was spoilt.

I have been wondering how to tell this story from the position of the knowledge that I have as a journalist who has access to decision making processes in Rwanda.

I deal with Rwandans at all levels – from the president to ministers, from high ranking to low ranking military, police and security officials, businesspersons, ordinary citizens, students, civil servants etc.

I can, for example, reveal that the single spoilt vote was cast by Kagame; something he shared with me. The other thing many people outside Rwanda might not know is that nine other political parties in Rwanda were represented at the RPF convention and all of them adopted Kagame as their flag bearer.  This is under the National Consultative Forum of Political Organisations, which is designed under the Rwanda constitution as a permanent consultative mechanism to promote dialogue and consultation among political parties on key decisions in the country.

To people outside Rwanda, the idea of one party getting involved in the decision-making of another party sounds choreographed. But this is because most people have deeply entrenched biases and prejudices about how democracy and elections should work. In Rwanda, democracy means working together in unity.

Over the years, I have been liberated from the prejudices that used to inform my analysis of events in Rwanda, and Africa. I now focus on the actual factors that drive particular political decisions.

It is difficult to tell the story of postcolonial Africa, and most especially Rwanda, because every time something happens, people refer to their prejudices instead of the facts.

This confusion is driven largely by the dependence by even African narrators on Western scholars and journalists. The lack of understanding, and sometimes deliberate distortion, is also aided by the inability of major players in key decision making processes in Africa to tell the story of what actually happened. Yet this is the only way the conversations about Rwanda and Africa can shift from speculation on “what must have happened” to “what actually happened.”

Rwandans challenged

Even what President Kagame said in his speech to accept the nomination to be the RPF flag bearer can be baffling to those outside Rwanda. Kagame said he would have preferred not to be running for president. He said, instead, he would have preferred to stand in front of the same audience and pass the leadership to another person. It had not happened, he said, because the RPF, the other political parties and the general citizenry actually asked him (I would say pushed him) to stand.

“I should be standing here today talking about a new leadership but you decided otherwise,” he said.

He added: “The pressure not to run again was less informed and meaningless than the pressure for me to accept it. I had no role in this but to accept it.”

He had accepted to take on the responsibility of being President for another seven years, he said. But he added: I want Rwandans to think about what should be done during these next seven years to resolve the issues that led you to ask me to stay on so that in 2024 I can perform the responsibility of passing on the leadership.

He then challenged young people to aspire for leadership.

“Aspire to be a leader, even a president. But above all, aspire to be a good leader. That’s what Rwandans need and deserve”, he said, suggesting that he is even thinking of a successor as a person who would have been in their early teens when the genocide happened in 1994. He asked Rwandans to think about this.

“What made you ask me to stay longer may be addressed in the next seven years. I want you to think about it it…I am not putting pressure on you but asking you to think about it because you must think about it,” Kagame told the delegates. You could have heard a pin drop.

Kagame spoke with a thoughtful and reserved tone, perhaps keen not to offend the feelings of many Rwandans who just do not want to hear him talk about retirement. As he spoke of resolving the issues that led him to accept to stay, many delegates had tears in their eyes. Few people know how hard it was for him to accept to stand again. I was involved in convincing him to stand again and, therefore, I know how hard this decision was for him. Thus, as he spoke with measured caution, I knew where he was coming from.

Then I began to ask myself: How then can I tell the story of the pressures Kagame confronted when he insisted on stepping down as president in 2017? How do I explain the difficulty we faced trying to dissuade him from that decision? How do I, as an outside-insider in the decision-making process, demonstrate the heaviness of his heart when he finally yielded to pressure to stand again? How can I tell this unbelievable truth in a situation where conclusions based on ignorance and prejudices are more believable than actual facts?

There is a perception across Africa that leaders do not want to leave power. That often, such leaders and their acolytes seek to amend the constitution to remove terms – not for the good of the country but to foster their personal and group interests. A lot of these concerns have a lot of factual validity. Kagame knows this all too well. In fact, one of the factors that had made him resistant to our efforts to convince him to stay was the bad reputation that removal of term limits has in Africa and elsewhere. He did not want to be seen as another power hungry African autocrat.

The ignorance of the factors, combinations and processes that led Kagame to accept to stand again is blinding. The prejudices that inform people’s attitudes towards leaders who change their nations’ constitutions to remain in power are very strong. So many people believe Kagame must have orchestrated and manipulated the entire process from behind the scenes so that he can remain in power. Yet the truth of what actually happened is far removed from this even as it is very hard to believe.

I was a key player in the process that led to Kagame accepting to stand in this election.

50 comments

  1. “So many people believe Kagame must have orchestrated and manipulated the entire process from behind the scenes so that he can remain in power”. I believe you sum it all,it could be the worst decision he has made. If you have spent 23 years and you have not layed foundation for others to take over,then ideally its impossible in the next 7 years.

    • NDUWAYEZU Jean Claude

      abanyarwanda we know where we come from and its about us to determine our destiny. President Kagame is our Hero, we have our Ikirezi and we know better how it is brilliant! lets keep momentum and let those who are speculating on “what must have happened” rensure them “what actually happened.” we are proud to be leaded by H.E Paul Kagame Umubyeyi udasumbanisha abana, umenya intama ze akaziganisha ahari urwuri rutoshye. Long live our president many blessingsssssssssssss

    • Thanks Andrew
      When Nyerere got the same request for him to stay on: this was his reply
      1. What I have not done in the last 23 years ( this is the same time that President has been in real control of power even he was was Vice President) I cannot do it in the next 23 years
      2. In order to allow other leaders to emerge I must get out out their way
      3. To test whether the system I have helped to build works I should step aside and see how it works without me.
      This is the great leader.
      We should not cheat ourselves because we know how systems work in Africa. If there was no debate about pros and cons of the extension and between different political programmes there is no choice. So people have to take what is available.
      I am not sure also if Andrew Mwenda would want to close his lucrative post as adviser to the President’s family. It is natural.
      Let us be bold and say: President Kagame could have done like Nyerere or Mandela and be great. He has missed the opportunity. It is bad for him, it is bad for the country.
      I am not surprised though that those who profit personally from his presence would try to find reasons to justify his actions.

      • I would like to bring to Mr. MBONIGABA’s and the likes of his that the Rwanda we deserve and shall never seize to work towards until its achieved is far better that the Tanzania of today that has its origin from the “mistakes” he has highlighted in his comments.
        Mzee NYERERE’s efforts and way of life would have yielded into a Tanzania better that the current one had he avoided the mistakes that Rwandan people are avoiding today of loosing a still needed and in fact the most suitable leadership towards the common goal.

        It should as well be noted that the history of the two nations is far different in ways of administration (pre, during and post colonial), historical tragedies, to mention but a few. This therefore means the way forward has to differ by all means.
        If you very well followed the development of the article, Mzee NYERERE’s approach was dropped for the mentioned reasons to mention but a few.

        Regards

        • Dear Muzungu

          Just to quote another President , even though he did not live up to his words and it cost him dearly: Former President Obote said in 1984 at Makerere University graduation ceremony: that.
          Once someone or a group comes to behave as if it has a monopoly of knowledge, the society is heading towards disaster. President Kagame and the ruling party RPF seem to be in that mood. Mu kinyarwanda ngo
          Utazi ubwbege ashima ubwe. kandi ngo uwanze kumva ntiyanze kubona.
          I wish I could be wrong but unfortunately as as President Kagame siad: “les faits sont tetus”.
          Leavin in denial is only helpful for a short while.

      • Well said Mbonigaba

      • Muhoza Géovanie

        Thanks

  2. If it is inherently undemocratic to amend constitutions, why do they contain provisions for doing so everywhere?

    • These are the lenses at which people who are blinded by the western democracy interpret what citezens decide. The constitution is for people and not the reverse I am afraid

  3. Success is a broad word. Stopping Genocide is a success. Not becoming a failed state and heaven for terrorism like we see in many countries is a huge success. Starting to develop from zero and register some growth is a success. It might take Longer to lift a lot of people out of poverty but president kagame did it for Rwandans. This is why Four million Rwandans petitioned Parliament to amend the term limit clause of the Constitution to allow kagame to stay.

  4. President kagame’s decision to run in the next presidential elections is multidimensional; it reflects a journey to rejuvenate the country’s social fabric that were destroyed years ago.”By social fabric I mean, unity, stability, ethics, and dignity on top of economic gains already registered by the country. It is an honour for citizens who own the country’s steady and progressive experience and who also want continuity

    • NDUWAYEZU Jean Claude

      you are right my dear brother its multdimensional as u said. lets work together for the prosperity of our #Rwanda Ingobyi iduhetse.

  5. I believe standing again is our choice as Rwandans I personally having seen both regimes. I would give him a big YES to stand again. We don’t need two terms useless coming and going without any meaning like in Tanzania. People had been suffering decades and decades and yet it is called democratic country with good governance!! Leadership in Rwanda and Rwandans have well advanced in terms of economy, security, infrastructures, health, education, employment etc, compared to the other countries in the region all of this because of him PK. Let him lead us he is our choice for our future and for our economy and security stability that you will never get somewhere else except in Rwanda “The Rwanda of the thousands hills” Yirirwa Ahandi igataha i Rwanda! And yet soon our language will dominate other regional languages look how many people who force themselves to speak it including many Europeans and Americans! “Ibyiza biri Imbere mutureke atwiyoborere

    • “Our language will dominate other regional languages.”

      Is this a Tutsi bug, the desire to dominate? Just asking.

  6. The transformation from the brink of a failed state in 1994, to one of the fastest growing economies in Africa,with an average growth of nine per cent between 2000and 2014, is not by chance but because of the good governance and visionary leadership of President Kagame. 

    • The narrative rehearsed by RPF political cadres or lobbyists like Andrew Mwenda that Rwanda that tends to make believe that Rwanda did not exist before RPF took power is totally flawed.

      Rwanda has always existed and well managed economically with a hardworking people. The cyclical political violence we have experienced since 1959 has been due to political and social exclusion which has reached extreme proportions under the RPF regime.
      Ex.
      The economic management under Habyarimana was praised as the case today by International financial institutions.

      The world Bank praised Habyarimana regime in its 1989 report (one year before RPF invasion):
      Rwanda; is among a handful of countries that has increased agricultural production faster that the population. It has done so without the inequities that have sometimes accompanied development elsewhere or the abundance of land of Cote d’Ivoire and so far, largely without chemical inputs or improved varieties.
      Food production in Rwanda grew at 4.7 % while the population grew 3,4% between 1975 to 1982. Rwanda has avoided urban bias so common in Africa. Government remained attentive to the farming majority in determining price policy, exchange rate policy, fiscal priorities, and effective rural institutions.
      Within the enabling environment output grew largely because of spontaneous changes undertaken by farmers” .
      • Foreign aid was well used.

      Oxfam country profile on Rwanda in 1993, (three years in the war) written by the country representative David Miller, “Rwanda: which way now” gives an account of the economic achievements after independence:
      The government could point to many credible achievements. Its pragmatic policies and the generally well managed economy of Rwanda had been rewarded by an influx of aid; the money (averaging more than $200 million dollars per year). The money has visibly been put to use: the road network has been transformed, so that all prefectures except Kibuye were linked by asphalted roads; water systems had been put in place so that almost 70% of the rural population had access to safe drinking water; offices had been built at national, prefectural and communal level; the housing of the average peasant had been improved; a peasants ‘bank had been created with over 100 branches over the “hills”; the electricity and telephone networks had been extended, and a fleet of buses provided to link all the prefectures on a daily basis and the government civil service had been enlarged, trained and equipped who were better than any other in the region”.
      Again, the Oxfam country profile adds “the most encouraging aspect of Rwanda now is that fundamental changes are occurring in rural communities which are beginning to form their own grassroots development groups. Rural men and women are starting to think about the sort of society that they want and making their views known with increasing confidence”.

      Since independence in 1962-1994 (32 years). Rwanda received approximately $4 billion, an average of $200 million a year under Habyarimana according to OXFAM.

      Under the RPF.

      It is true that according that statistics show development under the RPF regime but who has profited from the growth.

      According to UNDP Human Development Index Report (2007) which was jointly published with the Rwandan government as a blueprint of “turning vision 2020 into reality”.
      “Rwanda’s high growth rates are deceptive in that they hide large and growing inequalities between social classes, geographic regions and gender”. The UNDP report also noted that if the inequality had remained at 1990 levels and 1985, with the current growth rate of 5.8%, the income of the 20% poorest Rwandans would have more than doubled”.
      The report reveals that economic inequalities, have almost doubled in the last 20 years, placing Rwanda among the top 15% most unequal countries in the world .Such a situation is not good because, research shows that extreme inequalities especially when patterned along ethnic lines can be a serious source of conflict, which is the case in Rwanda.
      From 1994- 2014 Kagame regime is said to have received $ 12 billion in aid as compared to $4 billion since independence. ODA to Rwanda rose from US 711,750,000 in 1994 to $1.2 billion in 2011 before sharply being reduced to declining to $661 million in 2013 because of involvement with M23. This made Rwanda the country the biggest per capita ODA recipient in East Africa. Rwanda ODA capita was in 2012, $77; Kenya, $61; Tanzania, $59; Burundi, $53, and Uganda, $49.
      The campaign for national unity and the fight against sectarianism *(ndi umunyarwanda) is compromised by exclusiveness, privilege, nepotism, enrichment and corruption within the politically dominant circles.
      Growth and development does not provide equitable benefits across the society

  7. The model of democracy that Rwandans want should be left for them to decide. The advantage of a united population, with one common language, one culture, reconciliation with the past, and good leadership is that the majority of the people can easily
    reach consensus on what they want. Why should this seem strange or

    • In order to say that you made a decision it must be informed and this depends on being presented with pro and cons, different alternatives and scenarios.

      In Rwanda you have only one truth dished out by the ruling party if you try to contradict it you are criminalised under article 463 of the penal code namely that ” you are spreading rumours intended to incite the citizens against the government”. or you are accused of having genocidal ideology, of revisionism, sectarianism etc..

      So please watch out when you say that Rwandans unless Rwandans only mean the inner circle of RPF that takes all the decisions aimed at ( like how do we maintain power for ever. Unfortunately as the Centre for International and strategic studies rightly pointed our: the RPF regime has demonstrated so far tha tit cannot manage divergent societal demands without resorting to violence of coercion.

      This has been the cause of the cyclical violence in Rwanda and not the fact of having different ethnic groups.

  8. I tend to agree with the view expressed by many Rwandans here and elsewhere – that it was a broad opinion in Rwanda that in the interest of peace, stability and continued growth, President Kagame should stand again for election.

    • you do nor have to do badly to leave power. This is the problem with African leaders: leaving power is either coup, assassination, exile or prison. Doing well when in power is the job they are paid to do.

      • But i wonder, who are you to say all the stuffs you’ve said? I invite to come in Rwanda and see how the political situation is in our country, we the one who asked president Kagame to run for the next seven years. Please i want to make something clear, he is not the one who took this initiative, he is a leader of people and he is supposed to do what the Rwandans ask him for the benifit of every Rwandan. Running for this mandate was our choice, proud to be lead by him and please stop comparing countries because they will never be equal. Tanzania has its own history, South Africa holds its and our Rwanda holds hers. We don’t want to be like these countries, do you know the problems they encountered when these presidents, Nyerere and Mandela resigned? We don’t want our Rwanda to face the same problems, we want him to lead us and develop us further. After a certain period, we the growing youth we gonna take over. He is #ouronlychoice

    • You mean without Kagame, Rwanda as we know it today (based on what we read), will cease to exist?

      • hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh but you guy are you out of your mind?????? If not how dare u speak this????? Do you know someone called Diane Rwigara? She wanted to run for presidential post but unfortunately, she was not allowed due to some inconveniences. I wanted to introduce this one not because i wanted you to know here but because i wanted to inform you that in Rwanda one speaks everything he wants to say. Th situation is not the same when you want to say about the genocide, you say it as it was proven by the UN not by your opinions because if you bring you opinions, you want to violate our history. May be you visited another country and assumed as if you were in Rwanda. So we have political freedom as much as you are allowed to say whatever you want, form any opposition political party to mention but a few.

  9. The democracy that people use to elect a president is the same that they can employ to decide whether a brilliant leader should continue longer in power.

    • True , why should one change a winning team in 1st place? Rwandans’ decision for him to stay and his acceptance to bow to this people’s choice is for me another success and chance given to us Rwandans and Africa to enjoy more of his outstanding God given leadership skills. This man is a rare treasure God gave to us, to Africa and to the world.

      • I was in Kigali few months back, any time am talking about the Mr paul kagame the person will just walk ahead me, I mean very far, why because he or she is afraid to mention that name because he or she did not want to end up in prison.

        What kind government or president is that, his own people is scared to mention his name on the street because of fear of imprisonment. But at corner they can whisper you how pain in their heart to be Rwandan. Some even offer to follow me back to my country because their scared of unknown. One thing I found out about Rwanda people is, they did not know what democracy is all about because they are blind so much, the president use fear to rule or govern them. One thing u most know that one day monkey will go to market and it will not return.

        • So you mean you your self all people loves? I am a pure Rwandan who lives in city Kigali and am here to tesitfy that we dont only speak his name we even shout it everywhere. And anytime you want. You know when you are guility you think very one is seing when for sure noone is aware that u even exist. Please do not get one person and call them the citizen. Its always a place to be we so proud of our leader and his cabinet. Just relax and try to be optmist man. This will help you and make people trust you. Big up

          • I really can blame you, because you are looking for favour, let me tell you man. It is time you speak up, don’t you read? Where are the contesters in this election, why is Mr Paul kagame so scared of people who know and speak the truth. You are one of the brainwashed person who have not step out of Rwanda to a Democratic countries see how people express themselves. I was even in court to witness what is happening there. Can you see prosecutor telling judge if he free this man he the prosecutor will put judge in problem. Judge know that the person in question is innocent, but prosecutor did not want the man to be free because the prosecutor want his brother to take the mans house without any problem. At the Kigali international airport is another drama, if you are a foreigner transiting through that airport, you are in a big mess, because your laughing is a crime. I met two western African countries men in the court, they offence is why their Malaysia visa is a stamp, because it the Malaysia visas in their passports is a stamp visa they are fake and they have to be in prison for 6 years. Can you imagine? Without any verification. The two gentle men lawyer asked the prosecutor how do he know that those stamp visas are visa the prosecutor who is shameless said he use his eyes to see and know they are fake. Which kind of world are you living in? Please go and lean what is freedom

        • Mr.evens(as you say), I greet.

          Your comment is indeed contradictory in its own. You say people are scared of mentioning their president’s name as a standard measure of democracy according to you, yet yourself must have mentioned it severally to see (and indeed you saw) what happen(s/ed).
          – Are the corners you’re mentioning of outside the country?
          – Which could that your country be, that people wanted to follow you to?
          – What for life had you come to Rwanda for and how did you get to it? Hopefully it wasn’t a research, because that finding of yours could be and in fact is an unbelievable.
          Eagerly waiting for your answers

        • hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh but you guy are you out of your mind?????? If not how dare u speak this????? Do you know someone called Diane Rwigara? She wanted to run for presidential post but unfortunately, she was not allowed due to some inconveniences. I wanted to introduce this one not because i wanted you to know here but because i wanted to inform you that in Rwanda one speaks everything he wants to say. Th situation is not the same when you want to say about the genocide, you say it as it was proven by the UN not by your opinions because if you bring you opinions, you want to violate our history. May be you visited another country and assumed as if you were in Rwanda. So we have political freedom as much as you are allowed to say whatever you want, form any opposition political party to mention but a few.

  10. Andrew your analysis leaves a lot to be desired. Are u or even H.E Kagame proud that a nation of 10M+ pple is so afraid to find a leader to take them forward that they have to hold PK ‘hostage’? What if, God forbid, he died today, would Rwanda collapse? I respect his disdain for changing the constitution unlike M7 here, but if pple are so scared to move on with another leader now, why would they be ready in 7 years? Andrew, what is more interesting is an analysis of why Rwandans cannot imagine life without Kagame. I think you would do more justice to all Africans, not just Rwandans. I hope you do that. I taught at the University of Rwanda for over 3 years and i picked some ‘feelings’ from Rwandese. I have close Rwandese friends who have some opinions and i think you should tell us.

    • Everything Rwanda is all about Kagame. we’ll cross the bridge when we come to it.

    • You’re wrong!!!! We are not afraid of finding another leader, we chose him to led us because of our past. It is not easy for a developing country like Rwanda which has spent only 23 years building from zero to have recognized an able leader like Mr PK. we want him to lead us and develop us in the next 7 years so that any person who will take over will have a strong foundation. Remember if you want to build a tall house, you must dig a deep foundation. So, we are making the foundation more deep by choosing PK to lead us the next seven years.

  11. President Kagame has restored security in Rwanda, and has proven himself capable of many things as president. Now let’s say he listens to the outsiders and declines to rule again, and Rwanda goes back into instability….guess what? These same folks will just sit back and watch Rwandans killing each other as if they are just watching another horror movie… as it happened in Rwandan Genocide against Tutsi in 1994

    • Please be aware that RPF coming to power would have been impossible without the support of the people you are condemning for putting pressure on Kagame.

      Google and find out who are the members of the presidential advisory group.

  12. Rwandans now became wise nobody is there to run with the bandwagon effect of condemning extension of term limits especially by the whites who have reached far. my question is if what we were aspiring for has been got in terms of security, economic devt and above all equality in education without forgetting the right to have a job primarily based on merit. spearheaded by him, why should we think of somebody else we have not seen. it’s him and for sure if this is mentained we are likely even to extend other terms bse it’s our choice.

  13. I dont think anyone will ever believe that people decision forced the change of the constitution. But after all has been explained in the interest of diplomacy, i think it comes back to the Rwandans, this was our choice, we believe PK has the stand to move us forward for now as we groon the next President. We want him and we know why. 7 years down the road, he will help us mentor someone we can trust to lead us. If we find no one, we still hope we will give him all reasons to stay again.

  14. why should one change a winning team in 1st place? Rwandans’ decision for him to stay and his acceptance to bow to this people’s choice is for me another success and chance even a grace given to us Rwandans and Africa to enjoy more of his outstanding God given leadership skills. This man is a rare treasure God gave to us, to Africa and to the world.

  15. Biggest percentage in Rwanda think hes the right man to lead us!!! perfectly Yes, I can only pledge to him that he must surely teach the other leaders from the mudugudu(local leaders) to love, and work for the country like he does…the biggest challenge I see he shd face!!

  16. This absolves my admiration for PK

  17. Having a Man with the following credits:

    – Leading a Rebellion to liberate a Country from a tyrannic Leadership in just 4 Years while others can make it more than 20 Years.

    – Stopping Genocide against the Tutsi of Rwanda in 100 Days while others could take years to stop such an atrocity.

    – Rebuilding a country right from ashes whereas other had described it as a Failed sate.

    – Having been able to pulse Rwanda as one of the world’s fastest growing economies, averaging 8 percent growth per year over the past decade, according to the International Monetary Fund.

    – Having worked hard to make sure Rwanda is the third best place to start a business in Africa, behind Mauritius and South Africa

    – Rwanda’s goal is to be the technological hub of East Africa. It has an impressive e-government system, which ensures that most of the government’s financial transactions and other tasks are done electronically.

    – Having revolutionized an Education sector to be the core center of development putting emphasis on Human resources as the one Rwanda can enjoy; by launching the One Laptop per Child Programme, which aims to saturate its primary schools with laptop computers. attaining 99 percent primary school enrollment, the highest in Africa, according to the World Bank,it partnered with Facebook, the social media company, Created partnerships to launch a pilot project to provide Rwandan students with access to online education.
    Having been able to completed laying of fiber optic cables across the country that will provide affordable and reliable internet service.

    – Having been able to champion access to affordable health services has expanded through the introduction of community-based health insurance, which made our country one of the likely nations that were on track to reach the Millennium Development Goal on maternal health.

    – Making Kigali, the capital, like a thriving city. “Life is orderly, pavements are clean and roads, car free zones, while others are free from potholes that curse much of Africa…..

    – Having been able to bring together both ex rebels (RPA) and Ex Gvt forces (FAR) and form a core national army (RDF) and maintain a very difficult but promising journey together recording tremendous success on numerous fronts and battle fields in and outside the country, an army which is known as being the most professional and disciplined on this continent, this was not haphazardly achieved, non it required an extraordinary Generalship of HE P Kagame behind the scenes.

    – What about Unity and Reconciliation? Ndi umunyarwanda programme, Gacaca courts systems, Girinka, Bye bye Nyakatsi, Agaciro-Development fund,…

    – ETC….

    I see Rwanda becoming developed more than Singapore under the Leadership of HE P Kagame.

    • When genocide started saving tutsi civilians was not a priority for Paul Kagame
      i. First week of April 1994:after shooting down the plane Dusaidi and Muligande (RPF high ranking officials) were sent to New York to prevent any foreign intervention.
      ii. April 8, 1994 RPF asked all foreign troops to leave Rwanda, otherwise they would will be considered as enemy.
      iii. April 30, 1994 RPF rejects UN intervention (UNAMIR II(: below an extract from HRW report

      “When the Security Council discussed sending a larger peacekeeping force to Rwanda with a broader mandate to protect civilians, the RPF feared that the force might interfere with its goal of military victory. Its leaders may have been particularly concerned that the French might use the force to protect the interim government. Instead of welcoming the move and urging speedy implementation, the RPF spokesman in Brussels opposed it and asserted that there were no more Tutsi to be saved. On April 30, Gerald Gahima and Claude Dusaidi of the RPF political bureau reiterated this position in a slightly less forceful statement which declared:
      The time for U.N. intervention is long past. The genocide is almost completed. Most of the potential victims of the regime have either been killed or have since fled.
      The statement continued:
      Consequently, the Rwandese Patriotic Front hereby declares that it is categorically opposed to the proposed U.N. intervention force and will not under any circumstances cooperate in its setting up and operation. In view of the forgoing [sic] the Rwandese Patriotic Front:
      a. Calls upon the U.N. Security Council not to authorize the deployment of the proposed force as U.N. intervention at this stage can no longer serve any useful purpose as far as stopping the massacres is concerned https://www.hrw.org/reports/1999/rwanda/Geno15-8-03.htm
      iv. On May 5, 1994, The Washington Times wrote: “The rebel Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) commander (Kagame) said yesterday a U.N. force cannot bring peace to his blood-soaked country and only a guerrilla victory will end the massacres”.
      v. Luc Marchal, former Deputy Commander of UN troops in Rwanda, testified at the ICTR on 2/12/2006: “From my experience, my conclusion is that the RPF (Rwandan Patriotic Front) “had one goal, seizing power by force and keeping it to themselves”, “For me, it is the Rwandan Patriotic Front which has perpetrated the attack (shooting the presidential aircraft). Not once, never have I sensed the desire to make concessions, to smooth rough edges, to reach a consensus”.
      vi. On May 24, 1994, the Denver Rocky Mountain News writes “The commander of rebel forces warned the United Nations on Monday to stay out of the war in Rwanda”.
      vii. The RPF deliberately lied to the British government: when sending UN force was being discussed by Security Council: an extract from an article . It wanted total victory read extract below:
      “One week after the start of the genocide Edward Clay, British High Commissioner One week after the start of the genocide Edward Clay, British High Commissioner Kampala, met with the RPF vice-president who was afforded the opportunity to put forth his views on the subject of withdrawal of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Rwanda (UNAMIR) from the country, a subject to be discussed at the following week’s meeting of the Security Council, New York. In his reporting of this meeting, Clay advised London that “the RPF could take care of the current disorder and should be left to do so”. This cable concludes: the RPF is acquiring the demeanour of a government in waiting, being pushed by events to assume responsibilities beyond its expectations. Museveni would not fault this approach. Their claim that only they are in a position to stop the massacres is plausible. The most dangerous moment for the RPF will indeed arise if the Rwandan population set about each other, perhaps provoked by the army and/or fear of the RPF as a Tutsi force, posing a security problem beyond their power to solve. It would be premature to change the force’s character or mandate until the RPF have attained their military objectives and we can see more clearly what the UN can do to assist in normalising the conditions of life, bringing relief and perhaps facilitating contacts between the RPF and the other parties

      • Eeeeeeeeeeeeeh you are just playing on the million lives of Rwandans who were killed?????? But you, please stop this you were not in Rwanda and we who were in Bisesero when the french army came and we expected to be saved but we were left in the arms of Interahamwe militia, we who were in Eto’o Kicukiro being abandoned by UN forces and packed their dogs, we who were in Butare, where the interim president came and called our neighbors to kill us, and many places, do you want to know our history more than we know?? Do you know where the RPF army stayed when the president’s plane was shot down? Of course no, come and see where the plane was shot and compare to where the RPF military were you will know that you are wrong. The president’s home as well as the airport were both surrounded ex-FAR ARMY, how dare could have the RPF people entered the bordered region as it was. Please the things of genocide leave them for us, we know how the RPF army saved us no matter the condition was. May the almighty over Bless them. You will continue to say nonsense thing but nothing will change on our decision. I invite you to come and see our celebration on 20th August 2017 in Amahoro national stadium. You still amaze me by saying that RPF is a Tutsi force! It was composed by a variety of people, although it was started by them, every Rwandan who wanted to join joined. And of course it was started by them, because they had been into exile for so long!!! They wanted to come back to their mother country, since all the other methods had failed, we took guns and fought until we succeeded.

  18. My interest in all Andrews submission is that “he/(Andrew) was key in the process that led H.E. Kagame to accept to stand again”.

    Andrew; you must be a very powerful man in the Region, please make sure we are led to sustainable democracy and development!

  19. Hello Author, fellow Readers,Fellow PROs I greet you all.
    To me, the choice of the people of Rwanda for HE Paul KAGAME to stay shouldn’t be misinterpreted for a “no choice” that some critiques are forwarding even after mister author (Mwenda) naked truth. But rather the best of choices for a leader in him (HE P. Kagame) If democracy (by all) is the people’s choice then this should be seen as the best of choices for not only the Rwandan people but also EAC, Africa and globally, for not only the ordinary people, business class, leaders of/at all stakes. This shouldn’t still be under looked to be a choice for only present Rwandans’ too but instead for the deserved Rwanda, Africa and indeed humanity. It should be a leaf picked for the entire humanity.

  20. I request commentators who say that President Kagame stopped genocide against tutsi give their thoughts on the following observation that:.

    When genocide started saving tutsi civilians was not a priority for Paul Kagame

    i. First week of April 1994:after shooting down the plane Dusaidi and Muligande (RPF high ranking officials) were sent to New York to prevent any foreign intervention.
    ii. April 8, 1994 RPF asked all foreign troops to leave Rwanda, otherwise they would will be considered as enemy.
    iii. April 30, 1994 RPF rejects UN intervention (UNAMIR II(: below an extract from HRW report

    “When the Security Council discussed sending a larger peacekeeping force to Rwanda with a broader mandate to protect civilians, the RPF feared that the force might interfere with its goal of military victory. Its leaders may have been particularly concerned that the French might use the force to protect the interim government. Instead of welcoming the move and urging speedy implementation, the RPF spokesman in Brussels opposed it and asserted that there were no more Tutsi to be saved. On April 30, Gerald Gahima and Claude Dusaidi of the RPF political bureau reiterated this position in a slightly less forceful statement which declared:
    The time for U.N. intervention is long past. The genocide is almost completed. Most of the potential victims of the regime have either been killed or have since fled.
    The statement continued:
    Consequently, the Rwandese Patriotic Front hereby declares that it is categorically opposed to the proposed U.N. intervention force and will not under any circumstances cooperate in its setting up and operation. In view of the forgoing [sic] the Rwandese Patriotic Front:
    a. Calls upon the U.N. Security Council not to authorize the deployment of the proposed force as U.N. intervention at this stage can no longer serve any useful purpose as far as stopping the massacres is concerned https://www.hrw.org/reports/1999/rwanda/Geno15-8-03.htm
    iv. On May 5, 1994, The Washington Times wrote: “The rebel Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) commander (Kagame) said yesterday a U.N. force cannot bring peace to his blood-soaked country and only a guerrilla victory will end the massacres”.
    v. Luc Marchal, former Deputy Commander of UN troops in Rwanda, testified at the ICTR on 2/12/2006: “From my experience, my conclusion is that the RPF (Rwandan Patriotic Front) “had one goal, seizing power by force and keeping it to themselves”, “For me, it is the Rwandan Patriotic Front which has perpetrated the attack (shooting the presidential aircraft). Not once, never have I sensed the desire to make concessions, to smooth rough edges, to reach a consensus”.
    vi. On May 24, 1994, the Denver Rocky Mountain News writes “The commander of rebel forces warned the United Nations on Monday to stay out of the war in Rwanda”.
    vii. The RPF deliberately lied to the British government: when sending UN force was being discussed by Security Council: an extract from an article . It wanted total victory read extract below:
    “One week after the start of the genocide Edward Clay, British High Commissioner One week after the start of the genocide Edward Clay, British High Commissioner Kampala, met with the RPF vice-president who was afforded the opportunity to put forth his views on the subject of withdrawal of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Rwanda (UNAMIR) from the country, a subject to be discussed at the following week’s meeting of the Security Council, New York. In his reporting of this meeting, Clay advised London that “the RPF could take care of the current disorder and should be left to do so”. This cable concludes: the RPF is acquiring the demeanour of a government in waiting, being pushed by events to assume responsibilities beyond its expectations. Museveni would not fault this approach. Their claim that only they are in a position to stop the massacres is plausible. The most dangerous moment for the RPF will indeed arise if the Rwandan population set about each other, perhaps provoked by the army and/or fear of the RPF as a Tutsi force, posing a security problem beyond their power to solve. It would be premature to change the force’s character or mandate until the RPF have attained their military objectives and we can see more clearly what the UN can do to assist in normalising the conditions of life, bringing relief and perhaps facilitating contacts between the RPF and the other parties

  21. Mr Mbonigaba – STATE YOUR INTERESTS IF YOU ARE INDEED RWANDAN….WHAT DO YOU STAND FOR AS A HUMAN BEING. I find your assessment heavily biased- you are entitled to your opinion – I can gurantee you one thing though -TODAYS RWANDA has no space for your kind of thinking discredit Rwandas progress as you wish . None at all – we lost families in 94 and mindsets like yours are what will take us as a country BACK there. With people like you in charge I would join the army or start a rebelion on my own – stay confined in your restless inept position of thought. Ask Lee Kwan Yews enemies where they are— all finished- The man leaves on generation after another- thats what KAGAME has built – irrevocable progressive Nation Change- NO TURNING BACK- by the way am only 30 years of age. Count me still an active state actor so this country has no space for your KIND PERIOD. This country educated me as an orphan , this country has provided me the space and opportunity to start a thriving business ,This country has allowed me to educate all my siblings, this country has restored my dignity, this country is HOME TO US ALL AND WE PROUD OF ITS CURRENT NATIONAL CHARACTER , and I will defend it from your KIND NO MATTER WHAT.

    • Felicien

      I am very happy you are doing well. You have a thriving business.
      I do not want to trade the numbers of our dead relatives . My experience is that those who did not lose anybody are the most vocal and rich. We have lost many of our loved one and became a ladder for many of you to get to power and access wealth, I hope you are not one of them, who had nothing but are now millionaires. Are you aware of the numbers of survivors of genocide against Tutsi who are in exile. You know how many survivors of genocide who are worse off that hutus who at least get help from their friends in Europe? Can you honestly say that all the orphans of genocide are doing well.
      Examine your conscience again. Have ever asked yourself why there are so many survivors of genocide in exile. Asked yourself why the former king of Rwanda was not given a proper burial as a former head of state of Rwanda?

      Wish you the best in your dreamland.

      • Hello!!!

        This way of thinking really needs some kind of deliverance for a better future for in the first and most essential the bearers and after for the society even before it comes to the nation that has delivered way(s) of life.

        1. Why and how are the survivors living in exile has a link to the very kind of thinking portrayed herein the comment above. They are jealousy of the hutus receiving help support from the government and relatives abroad yet they’re not only denied the government support and worst of all are doing nothing to also support their relatives they’re claiming to be miserably living in Rwanda. The only “help” you’re giving is intoxication with this way of thinking that is far different from the truth on ground.

        2. Could the survivors in exile have gone due to the way the former king was buried?, If yes then they must have been on the side of the ones that had petitioned court back in USA to have the king’s body laid to rest in exile instead. And if no, then they must be the ones who are imprisoned in mind by the jealous of seeing people who had nothing and have now emerged to wealthy people after their resilience and hard work.

        3. The fact that not all genocide survivors and/or orphans aren’t doing well is one of the pushing factors for the Rwandan people’s decision to keep the hard and effective working leadership to undoubtedly achieve that for not only survivors but all the needy in the shortest time in relation to elsewhere.
        So please Mr. Mbonigaba and same angle viewers, as you advise people to examine their conscience please do a similar exercise for its never to late to do good. Do seek God’s intervention for simplicity.

    • Dear Felicien,
      Very happy for you, to hear about your prospects and the positive journey your life has been since the RPF government took over. Congratulations. I am Ugandan with some peripheral understanding of Rwanda, having resided and worked there from 2011 to 2014. I have though, 2 very close friends in Rwanda and who. like u are very appreciative of PK and the government’s work.

      My background too is in business and i deeply believe in the power of enterprise to create wealth and positive transformation of economies. And of course Rwanda has been lauded for creating some progressive reforms conducive for business growth. My problem with pple like u who have this disdain for criticism is that you do not seriously consider life and your future in Rwanda without Kagame. Look, PK has been there for over 2 decades; if u cannot allow him to retire now, why would you in seven years? And, let’s face it, PK is not young, what if he dies today? Will u Felicien leave Rwanda? What will happen to your biz? Kagame has been good at steering Rwanda, perhaps the best thing that has happened to Rwanda in recent times. But, the value you and your friends should be seeking from him now is to step aside, Rwandans get someone else to take the country forward as Kagame and Rwandans watch. If that guy messes things and the country up, we have the option to call on Kagame to bring us back onto the path or even recall him to lead us again. Why is this not obvious for Africans? We as Ugandans lost this because M7, unlike Pk has refused to step down. He wants to die in power, damn what happens to Ugandans when he is gone. PK wants to step down but Rwandans are holding him hostage, this is not sustainable. Think about this: WHAT IF PK dies tonight? PK is more valuable as an observer, guide and advisor to help steer our leaders and destiny when he is still alive and when both he and us see what other leaders do and can do. That is what secures your long term future and the future of your business. Fearing the future, sayings like ‘we will cross the bridge when we get there’ is behaving like an ostrich and dangerous. Best regards.

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