Rwanda: opposition parties want postponement of presidential elections
Kigali – Opposition candidates whistle for new dates for presidential elections because of excessive intimidation.
Three months before the presidential elections in Rwanda, the opposition presidential candidates: Ms.Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, the Chair of UDF and Bernard Ntaganda, the founding President of PS Imberakuri are deeply concerned about the lack of election level playing field and the excessive harassment of the opposition leaders. We strongly condemn the persistent interferences of the ruling party RPF and its Government to fuel conflicts within the opposition parties.
While all efforts have been deployed to split or destroy the only registered opposition party PS Imberakuri, the government has continuously refused to authorise constitutional congress of two opposition parties (UDF INKINGI and the Green Democratic Party of Rwanda). Ms. Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, has been submitted to inhuman treatments before her arrest and release on bail. Bernard Ntaganda is permanently diabolised while the party renegades enjoy free press from the ruling party and its stooges.
We ask for the postponement of the election because of the following reasons:
– Nothing has been done either to ensure freedom and fairness. There is no clear management dimension aimed at among others, levelling the ground and minimizing election violence. A rigging-induced post-election chaos seems unavoidable.
– The government has failed to release the much tout new electoral code
– The national electoral commission is not neutral: it’s a tool in the hands of the ruling party. All its current members are RPF militants.
– The government has derailed the registration of opposition parties. There is no impartial administration.
– Opposition leaders are victims of politically motivated arrests and trials.
– The government has censored popular independent newspapers.
– The incumbent is already looting State resources for his electoral campaign and is monopolising public and partisan media.
We call upon the International Community to come out of this lethargy state and speak out the harassment of the opposition and the shrinking political space in Rwanda amid the looming presidential race.
Ms. Victoire INGABIRE UMUHOZA
Chairperson, United Democratic Forces
Maitre Bernard NTAGANDA
Chairman, Social Party IMBERAKURI