Despite Kagame's vaunted "economic miracle," most Rwandans, rural subsistence farmers, live in deep poverty.
by Susan Thomson
In less than weeks, Rwandans will go to the polls to elect a president. The incumbent, Paul Kagame, head of the ruling Rwandan Patriotic Front, continues to exert total control over the country’s election process.
Kagame, who came to power as the leader of a rebel army, the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), that ended the 1994 genocide, legitimized his rule in 2003 when he won the presidential elections with 95 percent of the vote nationwide. Anywhere else in Africa, and indeed the world, such a result would indicate that Kagame was hardly elected in free and fair elections. Despite the fact that Amnesty International, the European Union, Human Rights Watch and the United Nations found serious irregularities and widespread oppression in the elections, Kagame won praise from major donors such as the United States and the United Kingdom for his thoughtful and benevolent leadership of Rwanda’s rebirth as a model recipient of international aid.
Read more at San Francisco Bay View, National Black Newspaper, http://sfbayview.com/2010/collateral-damage/.