Mr. President you recently declared yourself winner by your Electoral Commission and Your Excellency you are obviously jubilating. The only one political party and one man you allowed to participate in the electoral exercise have termed the exercise a sham because of malpractices that have characterized the entire process dominantly perpetrated by the RPF under your leadership.
You have suffocated political parties, civil society organizations, including all religious leaders and some international partners. Although the international community cautioned you well in advance about the need for your government to create a level ground for the 2017 general elections, you chose to ignore them and the European Union and the US have not yet congratulated you because they too regarded your term illegal and illegitimate.
Many Rwandans apart from those in your Prison (Rwanda) have written to you before the elections warning you about the dire consequences of seeking another term you had previously criticized as a failure of your own presidency and personal incapacitation. Indeed, you ignored all the warnings and went on to amend the constitution so that you can allow yourself another term.
Furthermore, your response to all your critics was that there was need for the amendment of Article 101, indeed, you have not only doctored the voters’ register to prevent the opposition from getting their votes but also giving yourself the votes you want so that you can win with a landslide of 98%.
Mr. President now you have voted in yourself by changing the constitution and suffocating other competitors like Diane Rwigara, there is no doubt that, this is the major tool that the RPF and your Electoral Commission used to produce the current electoral debacle in the country.
The result has created despair and disenchantment over elections in the country for many Rwandans. This has produced a politically explosive situation in the country which has even forced you deploy troops and other kinds of artillery in the whole county ready to maw citizens who dare raise a finger expressing their discontent.
As I write this article trying to figure out the way forward for our country, I recall your own words when you said that the reason why the RPF/A took arms to fight the Habyarimana regime was the fact that Habyarimana had refused refugees including yourself to return to their homeland Rwanda.
This was after what the RPF/A commanded by Gen. Fred Rwigyema then termed as a right to demand the fundamental rights including the right to have a country. You also accused President Habyarimana of staging sham elections and declare himself.
The RPF discussed options that are, going back to the UN and request for the peaceful return or the arm route your predecessors Habyarimana called Inyenzi had initiated? Indeed, going to the bush to take up arms to fight the Habyarimana regime was chosen as the best option. In disregard of what would be the cost in human life that had to be paid by Rwandans, the RPF resolved to take arms and the rest is history.
You have been accused of eliminating all your comrades, to date the decision of taking arms is epitomized by a devastated country scattered with monuments of human skulls and Rwanda is still a devastated country wailing the massacre of every Rwandan who dares to tell you the truth even your own comrades who helped you to come to power.
As I write, political parties and individuals you have denied the basic and fundamental rights that forced the RPF and yourself to return to home are also discussing the way forward for the country and their parties. Some of them have resolved as a preliminary reaction to the recent doctored election results, to call upon the disgruntled people of Rwanda express their displeasure through a peaceful demonstration. Your response has been “Anybody who dares to go to the streets for demonstration will be killed” and your armed groups are already deployed in positions ready to execute the order!
Your Excellency you are so imbued with military prowess that you are convinced that you will be able to preside over a police state you are creating pitched on patronage, the might of the gun and the power of money. The sustainability of such a state Mr. President is not borne out by any example in recent history.
My concern Mr. President is what is next for our country. You are convinced that the situation is very much under your control and that every Rwandan will be cowered down because of the presence of the military hardware and threats you keep dishing around. This reminds me of a similar scenario by the Habyarimana regime as RPF and many of your comrades went to the bush! They were so sure of their invincibility.
You are so sure! Many Rwandans are convinced that the situation is politically volatile and that it needs a statesman’s approach to avert a chaos that can anytime turn bloody during or even worse, after our lifetime you and I. Surely Mr. President, Rwanda should never be subjected to another spate of blood-letting and self destruction. We need to create a political environment in which all seeds of hatred and strife amongst the people of Rwanda are never given opportunity to germinate.
Like Rwanda, in Kenya and Zimbabwe, such seeds were allowed to sprout into blood-letting and destruction of property. It was after extensive loss of human life, destruction of property and the intervention by the international community that Kibaki of Kenya and Mugabe of Zimbabwe came to their senses and a formula was struck for each country which has kept their countries in relative peace to date. But then the said formulae would have been reached before hundreds of thousands died and many communities displaced.
It is amazing that you have failed to learn a lesson from your counterparts in Egypt and Libya, Mr. President; I believe it was because they wanted to stick to power and the lives of Egyptians or Libyans were disregarded as you disregard the live of many Rwandans.
Mr. President, you have put the future of our youth and the country at large in jeopardy. Because of extreme poverty in the country, the youth are being lured into political thuggery perpetuated by your leadership. You have recruited hundreds of youths throughout the country as Intore in the same way President Habyarimana recruited the Rwandan youths in Interahamwe. What will be the fate of their future with such training?
Mr. President I have a belief that the euphoria that currently engulfs the RPF over the so called landslide victory contains seeds of self destruction incubated within the subdued emotions of hate and revenge in the hearts of many Rwandans. Let me remind you what your own Minister Evode Uwizeyimana told you “Rwandans deceive Kagame and RPF that they love them and Kagame and RPF deceive Rwandans that they don’t know that they hate them”. Some are only temporally gripped with fear and others by the lure of money given the abject poverty in which the bulk of the population is trapped. But sooner or later fissures will develop along which those emotions may volcano out as previous happened two decades ago on our streets and villages, Mr. President this must not be allowed to happen. It is not your style of the brutal might of the gun and torture that will prevent it but through the power of the human heart of a leader as he feels for the people he leads.