Thursday, September 8, 2011

16 Years under RPF Leadership, by Karekezi Eduard

Sharing this post, with permission of the author.

It is after a sour war of 1990-1994 that ended miserably with thousands if not millions of Rwandan people killed or had left the country, the RPF (the current ruling political party in Rwanda) took power. This human; savage and de-constructing act driven by human inevitable and irrepressible urge to come or cling to power left our society being the most wounded and shattered in the 21st century. Though many were left in a quandary without answers to causes and way forward, some still question the morality of this tragedy which uprooted our social bonds and left our society in tatters. Nevertheless this came to be a food for thoughts for political scientists, anthropologists, conflict resolution practitioners etc. as on the notion that management of post-conflict period can be influenced by how such a conflict ended. It has been crystal clear that when a conflict ended in a zero-sum style and an integrative solution to a conflict was disregarded, then the running of post-conflict period can not only be disastrous but also a seed-bed for future struggles. As the winning side tries to economically, politically and socially asphyxiate the losing one, the latter will only remain with a single option: digesting the defeat by smouldering inside silently. Thus in most cases while waiting for new avenues, survival strategies like total surrender to the winning party are crafted, and by virtue of being victorious, the winner takes all and subsequently pulls the strings. Here is Rwanda where we are.
Since the end of the abovementioned tragedy (war), activities have been undertaken in various domains. These range from infrastructure development, the fruitless and controversial reconciliation policy to toto closure (critical websites, newspapers, debates etc.) of whatever might have disturbed the political diet enjoyed by the ruling political party, the RPF. Aggressive population control mechanisms have been crafted. This is likely to be quickly achieved by the fact that due to unbearable living conditions, people are eager to get cash (10.000 Rfw (1.3 US dollars)) for vascotomy instead of searching for information regarding the policy and effects thereof. Deliberately designed vague and overarching laws were crafted to ensure that whoever dares to criticise the regime fits into a web of genocidaires. This significantly led one man’s meat (self-aggrandizment by the winner) being another one’s poisson (the loser being undyingly silent). Consequently goats (losers) are browsing where they have been tied (somewhere in prisons, refugee camps, rural areas etc.). To fully lock the nation, snippers were posted on the roofs by establishing a National Consultative Forum for Political Organizations in which all registered political parties are locked, and operate at the behest of the RPF.
Nevertheless, it is said that the love of a woman and a botle of wine are sweet for a season but last for a time, the RPF’s credibility recently began and continues to wear thin, the government needs to recalibrate its foreign policy and retool its way of dealing with external world. Wherever president Kagame goes and whoever he visits, we expect the unexpected flabbergasting, acidic stories for a president who has been receiving medals from some unwary leaders. Though he remains obdurate, president Kagame has opted for ‘school diplomacy’ whereby he would largely visit schools and students rather than heads of state who increasingly are becoming aware of his misdeeds committed inside and outside his area of jurisdiction. The unity between African diaspora is becoming more and more growing against him. With this in mind, he fully knows well that odds are stacked heavily against him. Indications are that the diaspora has handcuffed/dwarfed the regime’s drive toward self-posturing as benevolent and people oriented. Definitely this has been one of the causes for recurrent drought spell in Rwandan politics, and to that end, analysts suggest RPF has lost its ideological compass.
General perception on a case of General Kagame Vs. Ingabire
Once in history Lenin said that: “It is impossible to predict the time and progress of revolution. It is governed by its own more or less mysterious laws.” We used to follow from different channels about what this African woman stands for. But no one could gauge the bravery of Madame Ingabire Victoire until she, due to her psychological impulse to be and feel free, her belief that injustice everywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, decided to leave her country of exile and returned home to challenge the myths attached to RPF (of being a family for all Rwandese) by taking part in the largely criticized August 2010 presidential elections. Our sense was that the locked political space was going to be navigated. We thought it was the beginning of a genuine debate, constructive dialogue on the problems bedevilling our society. We appreciated her political acumen, her insightful thoughts. A new political dispensation was unfolding. However, it was a high-voltage political odyssey. Even though her philosophy on national reconciliation was irretrievably doubtless; sadly, she was arrested and re-arrested before presenting her political project to the electorate. While consuming this misfortune however, what we have to know is that in any field, professionals use tools to achieve their goals. Doctors use stethoscopes, mechanics use spanners, footballers use boots, teachers use chalk and blackboards etc. In the profession of politics, dictators use institutions to destroy their real or potential/perceived opponents; and subsequently score their political goals. The ruling political party here in Rwanda (RPF) is using the legal system as a technical tool against its potential political opponents. The judiciary system has become a willing appendage of RPF. The decisions of RPF politicians masquerading as judges, often of distant and confusing character, are indeed destroying perceived real opposition parties piece by piece. But equally important to note is that opposition leaders did not enter into politics to play second fiddle. These parties are, though not yet some registered, not led by dim-wit leaders. That is why the peoples of Rwanda think of being currently in a political quandary. In fact it is after realizing that unless it’s bent, a man cannot ride on your back, these pro-democracy took a decisive and uncompromising decision of telling the thruth the power. These pro-democracy, now in detention in one of the notorious prison known as 1930 have unwavering support of the entire population due to their thirst for truth, true truth and human dignity. These prominent opposition leaders are Mr. Ingabire Victoire the Chairperson of FDU-Inkingi a yet registered party along other key opposition leaders Mr. Bernard Ntaganda, the founder and president of PSI-Imberakuri (now split unto two, a move crafted by the ruling party), Mr. Ntakirutinka of UBUYANJA and Mr. Deo Mushayidi (PDP Imanzi) to name a few. The ruling party has used all instruments available to nip these rival political formations in the bud.
There is a German proverb which goes that if you want to kill a dog you must allege that it has rabies. This is what the RPF falsely has been using in order to justify the ill-treatment of prominent opposition leaders. They have been accused mainly of harboring genocide ideology. “genocide Ideology” has been an unimpeachable weapon of choice in its judicial arsenal. It does not need a rocket scientist to confirm that the circumstances under which Madame Ingabire Victoire, the chairperson of FDU-Inkingi found herself in is a result of having dared and called a spade a spade. This is well known by all and sundry. When something is right, it is right regardless of who says it, let alone how or when it is said. What we have to digest is that what Ingabire said on national reconciliation is unimpeachably true and therefore, realistically right. She put forward a clear framework on how solutions can be found to the problems that continue to smould our national psyche. Nevertheless, despite all these political tribulations, she remains the Rwanda’s most valued asset. Despite the suffering endured by these champions of democracy however, usually the unexpected happens. And it is said that the morning sun never lasts the day. Repeating what she said ‘time is nothing when there is courage and determination’. To end this, I would like to say that‘bitter pills may have blessed effects’.

Now dear friend, whoever you are, wherever you are, please you help is needed. People are languishing in prison because of me and you. You never know democracy has become a transboundary issue like HIV. Your voice is needed. We want to hear from you. Not today, not tomorrow, not……!!!!!BUT NOW!!!!!!!!

By Karekezi Eduard

No comments:

Post a Comment