Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Yes, Kagame is on the loose but Rose Kabuye, Tom Byabagamba, Ingabire Victoire, etc, are the winners, not him.

The catchword for most of Rwanda’s opposition politicians and independent political watchers is despair. Theirs is self consolation, hopelessness, and fear of who will be the next to face the coercive instruments of the state. My relative recently emailed thus: "The war is lost. We are ending up in prison. Kagame’s dictatorship is un bearable.” This was after the incarceration of our relative who we shall not name for some reasons.
These emotions are justified but the argument, and therefore the judgment, is wrong. Justified because PK is managing to put behind bars all those who he thinks, rightly or wrongly, are questioning his authority. But in a broader analysis, the judgment that Kagame is a winner is wrong.Unseen by many, by imprisoning a man who dedicated his life to protect him, a lady whose only crime is thinking she has a right to compete for political power in Rwanda, or killing his ex-chief spy just because he believed the spy had a “too many secrets”, Kagame emerges in all this as a looser.First is that kagame is losing the war of social change. The system of repression and fear he has presided over for 20 years is crumbling; unable to contain the forces of change. If upcoming politicians and political parties like RNC, FDU or PS Imberakuri can mobilize sizeable number of followers, who publicly declare their support to them; it’s an emphatic testimony that Rwandans are transcending fear, and are ready to defy repressive measures by the Kigali government in protection of their rights, in defense of their freedoms.
Some like my good friends Patrick Karegeya or Rwisereka Kagwa Andre (RIP) may have ended their lives pre-maturely but the fact that these repressive measures have not deterred the remaining from going on, condemning Kagame’s terror machinery, testifies sense of purpose and strength that Kagame never imagined in 20 years. So, when relatives or politicians sound defeated, loose hope; they lose momentum and focus, instead of inspiring their followers to resist repressionSecondly, by unleashing his wrath towards his critics, Kagame has exposed his true self- a megalomaniac zealot whose sole pre-occupation is self perpetuation in power. This has made him subject to international scrutiny more than ever. If you don’t believe in me, believe in the BBC, which is soon beginning to air series that are fundamentally contrary to “Kagame as a savior" narrative or "The Politico which recently run a missile authored by PK’s former PS David Himbara. This, not discounting various UN reports, Human Rights reports, etc, countering PK’s narrative. So, what we are seeing are the last kicks of a dying horse not signs of darkness ahead.

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