Rwanda: the ruling party prepares the ground for 2024

Rwanda: the ruling party prepares the ground for 2024

Rwandan President Paul Kagame was re-elected on Sunday as leader of the ruling Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) party for a five-year term. Meanwhile, the parliament is preparing an amendment to the constitution, to combine two elections: presidential and legislative. Paul Kagame does not rule out seeking the presidency. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

It’s not a surprise that President Paul Kagame was re-elected this Sunday as the head of his party, which he has led from the bush for thirty years. He was chosen on the sidelines of the 35th anniversary of the existence of the RPF-Inkotanyi which liberated the country and ended the genocide of the Tutsis in July 1994.

It may be a road opening up to his own presidential candidacy scheduled for August 2024, while the parliament begins a process of amending the constitution on Monday.

The objective of this parliamentary activity, according to the minister in charge of justice and guarantor of the constitution Emmanuel Ugirashebuja is to combine two electoral deadlines.

“The main objective which motivated the President of the Republic to request this amendment is above all the combination of the presidential and legislative elections which were postponed by two years. This combination has two essential advantages: the reduction of the timing for the preparation of the elections, then the population will go about its activities without however thinking of the elections every time in three years and the budget allocated to the elections will be considerably reduced and therefore the money can be used in other projects of public interest”, he explained to parliament.

Some observers speculate that the parliament wants to tailor a constitution to President Paul Kagame who has ruled the land of a thousand hills for 23 years.

Here President Kagame does not rule out seeking re-election. He mentioned it during his last press conference.

“You ask if I will be a presidential candidate next year. In reality, I don’t know. It is the people who decide. But when I say I don’t know, that means it’s possible. Maybe, it will be done or not. So remember that the answer is 50% yes,” he replied to a Kenyan journalist.

His supporters have already expressed their wish this Sunday after having renewed him at the head of the RPF-Inkotanyi. They indicated that “the country still needs the leadership of Paul Kagame”, citing a record level of development in almost all sectors of national life.

In 2015, the same Rwandan constitution was amended to remove Article 101 setting presidential term limits, which allowed Mr. Kagame to run again in 2017 in an election he won with a majority. overwhelming by more than 98% of the vote.

Critical voices and his opposition speak of an anti-democratic act and accuse him of leading the country with an iron fist. They denounce in particular the lack of freedom of expression and opinion as well as the shrinking of political space.

But for the Kagame regime, Rwanda chose the democracy that suits it after the dark times of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsis, a tragedy that killed more than a million people in just three months between April and July before the then Tutsi RPF-Inkotanyi rebellion stops it.

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