Rwanda Development Partners Should Emphasize Opening up of Political Space as Leverage For Foreign Aid to the Government of Rwanda and Save Rwanda’s Democratization Process.
The Democratic Green Party of Rwanda is calling upon Rwanda’s Development Partners and all Friends of Rwanda to emphasize much more the opening up of political space as leverage for foreign Aid to the Government of Rwanda. This is the only sustainable way that will ensure a peaceful democratization process for our Country.
The President of the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda is so much alarmed with the new allegations doing the rounds in the diplomatic circles in Kigali, being spread by some people from the Rwandan Government, that he [Frank Habineza] has left the country to join hands with those preparing for war.
This is a total lie, no one should accept to be fooled. After putting in prison all my opposition colleagues Bernard Ntaganda of PS Embarakuri and Victoire Ingabire of FDU Inkingi, now they are trying to find excuses to block me from coming back home. This is an excuse being used to blind fold the International Community that all opposition politicians are criminals. No one should buy that naked lie. They should rather release all political prisoners and open up political space, instead of giving endless excuses.
My background is very clear, it can be tracked from my childhood in Uganda and my life at the National University of Rwanda in Butare and thereafter. Actually before I was appointed by the cabinet to work in the Government in 2005, a background search was done on me. I have lived a peaceful and non-violent life. I am an innocent democracy loving citizen and a respected member in my Church. Before joining politics I was in charge of Men’s Fellowship. My morals are not up for question. Ever since I joined opposition politics, for over a year now, the Government of Rwanda could not find any criminal charge against me, they tried to dig up in all my former places of work, including at my previous church and found nothing against me. I have the moral authority to challenge the Government of Rwanda as the only remaining Opposition Leader outside prison.
I have a clear political ideology [the green ideology] which I also spear head in Africa as the President of the African Green Parties Federation. I have not been involved in any genocide ideology politics, I always champion for the unity of all Rwandans, even those who ask for my tribe I always tell them am Rwandese. I have never even attempted to get in touch with any armed group. I believe that the problems of Rwanda cannot be solved by use of military might but through peaceful means of conflict resolution, that is non-violence. Actually if there is anyone out there who thinks that an armed struggle can help to solve problems in Rwanda, they should forget about that. Things have changed, Rwanda of today is not the Rwanda of 20 years ago, regional and international politics have also changed. I am completely against any use of military force to take political power. Those who think so are day-dreaming. Likewise the President of Rwanda should not be bothered by such baseless threats and roumers, even FDLR has failed, yet it had all the means.
Our party decided not to contest the presidential elections to avoid any post election violence and declared its intentions to stand in the upcoming parliamentary elections. We believe that the changes we want in Rwanda can be achieved if political space is opened and when we are in parliament and other decision making organs. We also understand that democracy is a gradual process not an immediate event.
Am now aware that some people in the Government have approached my people in the party and requested them to pin me down on any criminal activity and then be awarded party registration and other big offers. The Government of Rwanda should come out clean and save its face. They would get more credibility by warmly accepting our party to get registered without indulging themselves in such a smear campaign against me. They are risking the credibility and image of the person of the President and that of the Republic of Rwanda. We have only one Rwanda, we have nowhere else to go, only what we need is to live at peace with each other, have independent institutions such as Judiciary and Parliament, then we would be sure that our children will live together happily thereafter.
I would like to clear out all doubts to all those wondering my whereabouts and what am doing in Europe ; when I left Rwanda, I arrived in Sweden, went to Germany, came back to Sweden, and then went to France and again came back to Sweden, I had official invitations for all those trips and it was planned before I left Rwanda. Ever since then I have not left Sweden. I have actually declined any further invitations to visit America or other European countries for fear of not wanting to be mis-interpreted.
I am in Sweden on specific duties ; working on the African Green Federation Capacity building Project and as well as Rwanda Sustainable Organic Farming Project. My duties will soon be done. I will be back home soon. I can prove what I am saying. I have never traveled to South Africa or been in touch with the people there. The concerned authorities of the Government of Sweden know my residence address and can prove my travel details explained above.
I call upon the Rwandan Government : to drop all those excuses and let the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda be registered, quicken the investigations into the gruesome murder of our First Vice President, Andre Kagwa Rwisereka, and release all political prisoners.
The International community should emphasize much more the opening up of political space in Rwanda as leverage for foreign aid. We would like to make this clear, we are not calling upon stopping of foreign aid to Rwanda but would like you to use your friendship with the Government of Rwanda to bring genuine democratization. We count on you.
I would also like to call upon all the members of the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda not to accept any political manipulation and empty offers. Always remember what happened to those who divided PS Imberakuri, remember that they were driven in good cars for a short time but later ended up in prison. I have no intentions of staying outside for long, I have been paying up all my bills in Rwanda. The office is now paid up till end of December 2010 and it is open every day. My house bills are all cleared up, my car is packed in my compound and its functioning well, don’t be mis-informed, I will be back home soon. Be strengthened. There is still hope. After every big storm there is sun shine. Yes we can. We shall overcome.
Issued on 09th November 2010
Democratic Green Party of Rwanda