Rwandan President Paul Kagame wants a safer Rwanda

… safer for whom? – Watch the video, 3.16 min, published on Global, by Godwin Agaba and Ann Garrison, April 23, 2010 … and read the Editorial by Rwandan journalist Godwin Agaba:

Anyone who has been following events in Rwanda over the last few weeks will agree with me that it is now clear what President Paul Kagame really wants. A safer Rwanda! A Rwanda where there is no political upheaval, no opposition politics, no sentimental politicians, no old friends, no dissent and, above all, no critical newspapers to report the prevailing “peace and tranquility.” Presidential elections will go ahead as planned in August and when the dust has settled in September, those still living will witness a sympathetic, loving and caring president, a head of state ready to forgive and forget as he embarks on another seven year term as head of state. How cool is that … //

… Those who have dared to challenge the establishment now find themselves in limbo fearing not only for their lives but, at the moment, for their political parties as well.

Frank Habineza, another of the political hopefuls, a former Rwandese Patriotic Front member who broke ranks to form the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda – a party whose registration seems to bother Kagame more than the poverty in the country – is not having it smooth either. He has on several occasions been in the news complaining about scary emails and intimidating phone calls from state agents who continue to threaten him unless he gets out of politics.

Bernard Ntaganda, who until a week ago was party chairman for Rwanda’s only vocal political party, PS-Imberakuri, was successfully ousted by a party wrangle within his own party that many believe was orchestrated by the ruling Rwanda Patriotic Front.

With these under control, in dissaray, under investigation or currently being accused of one or several offences, Kagame will definitely emerge as the one and only presidential candidate come August. He will achieve what he has set out to achieve – ruling Rwanda – forever. And as long as the elections are held at the hindsight of local and international observers, we will have no legal reason to believe that his victory was manipulated.

The media, which in such an environment would have provided credible evidence as to the real situation on the ground, has been manipulated. Those like Umuseso, who have not been so keen at accepting government tokens, have now been suspended. The six months suspension effectively rules out Umuseso in the media life of Rwandans until, well, after the elections. If that is not calculated, then I stand to be corrected as to whether Kagame is not preparing himself to be the father figure and self-appointed Lord of Rwanda he wishes and claims to be.

Godwin Agaba was a Rwandan correspondent for Great Lakes regional outlet; he is now in hiding but still publishing without his byline.

Watch the next video, 3.12 min, (on Global /scroll down) … and rest of (full text).

(Articles by Ann Garrison).

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