A CRACKDOWN ON THE OPPOSITION WILL NOT BRING DESIRED CHANGE.

Kagame is striking the shepherd to scatter the flock. In fact, I was not surprised to hear that the Kagame police besieged the headquarters of FDU Inkingi in Kigali to arrest the first vice president of the party Mr Boniface Twagirimana and staff before yesterday given what the same police had done to Diane Rwigara and family two days earlier.

Last Sunday Boniface was heard from the Voice of America (VOA) criticising Kagame’s political incitement when he reappointed ministers implicated in corruption and embezzlement scandals. Boniface saw the contrast between Paul Kagame’s negative comments about the misdeeds of those ministers and reappointing them as paradoxical. So, in Kagame’s Rwanda this was enough to open a file for state crimes. This inhuman crackdown on the opponents is the depraved work of the delusional despot Kagame who deceives himself that suppressing opposition militants just slows the momentum of the wheels of change already set in motion. That tyrannical strategy won’t work. Rather it adds fuel to the engine of revolution. After all, it looks as if Kagame is ignorant of what recently happened to President Ben Ali of Tunisia, Hossin Mubarak of Egypt, Laurent

Gbagbon of Ivory Coast, Blaise Compaore of Burkina Faso and many other despots who went that route. The reason Kagame took power in 1994 and ran Rwanda poorly within 17 years, is because those who were in the opposition have been what Kagame wanted Diane Rwigara, Boniface Twagirimana and consortium to become – opportunistic stooges.

The police actions reflect that the government has been shaken by the growing mobilisation of large sections of the local populace. Otherwise you cannot imagine how Kagame who brags about winning the previous elections with 99% of the vote is feeling uncomfortable before the voices of unarmed opposition. Rwandans used to be registered as too cowardly to challenge a repressive regime but now it is no longer the case. With the influence of opposition activists, Rwandan people are getting to outgrow their fears on a day-to-day basis. The regime of RPF is worried to see that the Rwandan politics have come to the turning point where it is no more a Kagame-Twagiramungu two-horse race but now a huge network of young politicians emerging on our political platform. Before these young opponents Kagame appears finished politically and is seated on a democratic change time bomb.

We need a free society where no countryman or countrywoman will be an alien in their forefathers’ land of birth. We need good governance, justice and peace. To make our dream come true, we need patriotic leaders like Nelson Mandela, Patrice Lumumba, Jomo Kenyatta, etc unlike Paul Kagame who is motivated by self-empowerment rather than promoting democracy.

Jean Rukika