Kagame Becomes Standard-Bearer for Rwanda's Presidential Successors

KIGALI, Rwanda, Oct. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Rwanda's President Paul Kagame urged the country's senior leadership and foreign diplomats that his achievements - chiefly; fighting for the dignity of the Rwandan people should be the benchmark to select his successors.

In the latest defense of Rwanda's position on regional and international issues, President Kagame tackled the Congo Conflict during his address at the launch of the judicial year 2012-13 at Parliament on September 04. The occasion coincided with the swearing in of senior government and military officials.

At the close of an assertive hour-long address President Kagame turned his attention to internal politics. He said that some donor countries were uncomfortable with Rwanda's significant progress. He added that Rwandans should get accustomed to this "power of refusing injustice."

"You will keep hearing from me on this," said the President amidst applause, adding: "That's why you hired me. And I would be happy that some or all of you should be thinking about how to continue with this attitude of granting ourselves dignity."

Since the 1994 genocide against Tutsis, Rwanda has been led by two Presidents. President Kagame came to power in 2000, following the resignation of his predecessor. Three years later, he won a landslide election victory for a seven-year term under the new constitution that had been ushered in the same year.

"I want to beg you so that even after me, you should have somebody who continues on the same path," said Kagame. "In fact, this should be the qualification that the one who will step in, or stand, or seat in my position, should be [able] to fight for these Rwandans and beyond," he added.

Belgium criticized

Amid a volley of hostile international headlines and donor indication of cut backs in funding depending on the outcome of events in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda is now fighting back. This counter-onslaught is being led by President Paul Kagame who insists that Rwanda will not succumb to the west's "injustice" of making "dead wrong" accusations of rebel support. He shared his concern for the Government of DRC not accepting blame for the crisis.

Rwanda's colonial master Belgium also got its fair-share of scrutiny. "Long ago we used to be under the same territory of Rwanda-Urundi-Congo- Belge…do you remember? Some of these people think that this is how it still is," said the President. "This is not how it is. Rwanda is no longer under the Rwanda-Burundi- Congo- Belge…Zero!"

"The people, who caused the problems in Congo, are there and they have been aware of this problem for decades. But at the end of the day they ask Rwanda to take responsibility for the presence of Rwandophones in Congo? Those that took these Rwandophones should answer this question…", he concluded.

Over the past few months, especially since June this year, Rwanda has found itself in the spotlight over an alleged role in the DRC crisis. Kigali has dismissed the two unjust UN reports their entirety and President Kagame and Foreign Affairs Minister, Louisse Mushikiwabo have lambasted them and similar unfair accusations from groups like the Human Rights Watch in turns.

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Gahiji Innocent

NSR Group


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