Rwanda Information Portal

Editor Agnes Uwimana of Rwandan independent newspaper Umurabyo arrested

Ikinyamakuru cyigenga UMURABYO

Agnes Uwimana, the editor of the independent newspaper UMURABYO, has been arrested on Thursday by Rwandan police. According to Police spokesman Eric Kayiranga, Uwimana is accused of “incitememt to civil disobedience, contempt of the head of state, spreading rumours to cause public disorder and denying the genocide of the Tutsis.”
Uwimana had already served a one-year jail sentence for defamation and promoting division. She had resumed publication of her newspaper after serving her term in early 2008.
The Media High Council, a government media regulatory body, had recently warned Uwimana over her articles.

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July 9, 2010   No Comments

Rwanda To All ‘Barking Dogs’: The Train Will Go On, Unaffected.

from Joseph Rwagatare.

In reaction to Vincent Magombe’s article (see SOS Rwanda – Please, help defuse the situation – before it’s too late), Joseph Rwagatare reacts and reminds the readers that his master Paul Kagame calls people who raise their voice like Magombe are nothing else than “barking dogs”.

“Asked by journalists whether he was not concerned by the increasing cacophony from individuals and groups opposed to his government, Paul Kagame retorted: a dog will bark at a moving train, but will not stop the train by its barking.

It is common for dogs to run in a pack and bark at a moving train or other vehicle until they tire and stop.
They will wait for the next train and repeat their running and barking all over again. All the while the train chugs along unaffected by the noise of a single dog or a pack of them. The dogs, too, never seem to learn about the futility of their action.”
Joseph Rwagatare

Of barking dogs, trains and treason

Kigali — Former US President Ronald Reagan famously divided the world into good and bad guys. This is, of course, only part of the picture.

The majority of the world’s population are neither one or the other. They are indifferent. Reagan was correct in one sense, though.

The good guys and the bad ones play a disproportionate role in the world. But even these play their role differently. The good guys do their bit quietly, without fuss. The bad ones (Reagan called them evil) are quite vociferous. They want to influence events by the sheer weight of their noise and the amount of venom in their views. .

Rwanda has had the experience of these two types. On July 4th the country awarded medals to some of the good guys for their contribution to the liberation of Rwanda and for their continued support of her development.

In characteristic fashion, the people recognised for their contribution sought to downplay their role, giving the credit to Rwandans instead. President Paul Kagame remarked that their self-effacing modesty was a result of the recognition that they were doing what was expected of any decent human being.

That is the distinguishing feature of good people. They do whatever is necessary to improve the human condition without demanding or expecting credit for it.

On the same July 4th the country also celebrated the defeat of the bad guys. Their supporters, however, remain active (at least in terms of the din they make) in the hope that they can derail the progress Rwandans have made in the last sixteen years.

Talking about derailment, President Kagame had a very apt remark for the association of evil drummers. Asked by journalists whether he was not concerned by the increasing cacophony from individuals and groups opposed to his government, he retorted: a dog will bark at a moving train, but will not stop the train by its barking.

He could have added, but did not, (he left that to people’s common sense) that it is common for dogs to run in a pack and bark at a moving train or other vehicle until they tire and stop.

They will wait for the next train and repeat their running and barking all over again. All the while the train chugs along unaffected by the noise of a single dog or a pack of them. The dogs, too, never seem to learn about the futility of their action.

Of course, all this is amusing to the passengers on the train. They laugh at the foolishness and waste of energy and time by man’s best friend. A few of them are moved to pity and wish that all that energy would be used more profitably.

The Rwandan train is moving ahead, chugging along very nicely, the discordant noise from outside regardless. Rwandans on the train are amused, but not distracted, by the noise. Instead they are happy to work to make the train profitable.

Still the noise remains. The latest addition is the voice of Vincent Magombe. Writing in The Independent on July 2nd , Dr Magombe, supposedly an expert on African affairs, said the problems in Rwanda today can be explained by a power struggle between two Rwandan clans that were reported to have held power in pre-colonial Rwanda. The same power struggle has now resurfaced according to Magombe’s analysis.

How he comes to this conclusion is not clear. Clan politics in Rwanda at this point? It seems he must have stumbled upon some account of 19th century Rwandan history as he wandered through the archives in London looking for something that would make him relevant.

He must have read something about clans and power in the Rwanda of more than a hundred years ago and lifted it to explain the country today. And on the basis of this “discovery” he predicts doom for Rwanda.

The prediction seems to me to be more a projection of his dark intentions than a realistic assessment of the situation in Rwanda today.He is not alone. He is part of a group of so-called African intellectuals who make it their business to run down the countries they left for whatever reason.

Another one is Terkastan (she of the forged signatures fame. Remember her?), allegedly a human rights activist and “expert” on Rwanda. She is now the chief cheerleader of all those making the loudest noise about Rwanda’s sins. She has done one decent thing – let the mask of human rights fall and revealed her true colours. And reader, they are not very attractive.

In the midst of all the noise, there was a whiff of treason in the air. Our leading dissidents (this is how they are touted by the the noisy groups and handlers) have found solace in words of comfort and commiseration from foreign security agencies.

They have got more – information on government to government communication. Are these coincidences? There may have been other contacts even before the fugitives (that’s what they really are) fled from justice as was suggested at the president’s last press conference.

On a lighter note, a combination of barking dogs and trains that they will not stop, and treason are so intriguing a Hillywood film maker might find them suitable material for a thriller. Natives of this hilly land may then get wonderful relief from their otherwise serious business of getting the train to its destination.

Source: The New Times.

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July 9, 2010   2 Comments

Kagame faces three challengers in August 9 Presidential elections

“Partial truth is worse than a lie. What the author of this piece achieved in presenting the news about the challengers of Kagame in the upcoming presidential elections is to get us the readers find them genuine. Something they are not.”
Ambroise N.see below.

President Paul Kagame will face three challengers in Rwanda’s August 9 presidential elections, the electoral commission of the central African country announced Wednesday.

Social Democratic Party candidate and Deputy Parliament Speaker Jean Damascene Ntawukuriryayo, the Liberal Party’s Prosper Higiro and Alvera Mukabaramba of the Progress and Harmony Party – the only woman candidate – will challenge Kagame in the ballot.

Mr Kagame, who has led Rwanda since the end of the 1994 genocide, is the favourite to win the vote. Rights groups have accused Mr Kagame of stifling any form of dissent in recent months, while the US blamed Rwandan authorities of taking “worrying actions” to restrict freedom of expression ahead of the presidential poll.

“They are the four candidates who were cleared because they fulfilled the legal requirements,” said Charles Munyaneza, the electoral commission’s secretary. Opposition leader Victoire Ingabire who tried to register her party for the election was briefly detained on charges of denying genocide and collaborating with a terrorist group.

Another opposition candidate who intended to run for the top seat was arrested last month and charged with a terrorism offence and his trial alongside nine co-accused is under way
Source: AFP cited by rnw.nl

Ambrose N. reacts to this article and clarifies the situation:

I would like to highlight the bias and misleading character of the article. Partial truth is worse than a lie. What the author of this piece achieved in presenting the news about the challengers of Kagame in the upcoming presidential elections is to get us the readers find them genuine. Something they are not.

Dr. Jean Damascene Ntawukuriryayo, Rwanda’s Deputy Speaker of Parliament, cannot challenge President Paul Kagame and the RPF in the upcoming August presidential elections. He is a former Health Minister and his Social Democratic Party (PSD) have been sleeping in the same bed with RPF since 1994 and in 2003 elections, PSD backed the RPF candidate. The President of PSD, Dr.Vincent BIRUTA, became the Speaker of Parliament then and there-after, till now the Speaker of the Rwandan Senate-the second Supreme Organ in the Country and Number two in hierarchy according to the Rwandan Constitution and also the Deputy Speaker of Parliament is not far away from the top hierarchy and decision makers of the Land.

The usual master plan is already known: the right time the stooge candidate will urge his supporters to vote for the incumbent. It’s very clear that PSD is an RPF satellite and affiliated Party and has never been in opposition since 1994. It is just coming in to escort and give legitimacy to the RPF Candidate and hoodwink the international community that the elections are free and fair.

The Permanent Consultative Council of Opposition Parties in Rwanda has strongly condemned this new RPF strategy of doing away with the real and genuine political opposition by embracing its coalition Partners, PSD and PL as its new opposition.

PSD and PL have never stood up publicly to challenge the RPF regime, they have never denounced the injustices of the RPF against the population, they have never confronted the RPF for the democratization of the country, they have always been comfortable with the RPF-established clientele system and they have always supported all RPF activities without giving any critic publicly.

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July 9, 2010   2 Comments