Saturday, August 05, 2017

There Are Plenty of Lessons from Rwanda Elections
August 05, 2017

An electoral volunteer talks to COMESA observers at Groupe Scolaire Kimironko II polling station in Gasabo District yesterday.

Elections in Rwanda should be an opening eye to our brothers and sisters from around the continent with regard to electioneering process. They shouldn’t be in the country to observe only flaws to tell the world; they should also observe the best practices and be able to tell the world that it is very possible to have a very peaceful and fair election in Africa without chaos, hate speech, violence, and killings.

The observers should draw many lessons that Rwanda has demonstrated in the ongoing campaign rallies. Elsewhere in Africa, campaign rallies and electoral process have often been a source of social unrest, hence illegitimacy of the process from the first place.

The constitution amendment that allowed the incumbent to run for yet another term has given Rwanda’s critics in the west a clear indication of the expected results. They know well that Rwandans love President Kagame from the deepest point of their hearts. This makes some out there unhappy.

So it is my call to the African electoral observers to be keen on Rwanda’s election process. Look at how Rwandans behave; they come in thousands in peace and go back home in peace. Look at politicians; they are not bribing voters as we have seen in many parts of Africa. In some countries, voters buy leaders and leaders buy voters.

This is not the case in Rwanda. There has been no corruption in this election and opposition candidates were not harassed.

Look at the Election Day; people just cast their votes and returned home. And they patiently waited for results from the comfort of their homes. And there was no room for rigging.


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