Unfair attacks on Rwanda have nothing to do with democracy

The premise is all wrong; it had nothing to do with any alleged conflict between the Rwandan people and democracy, liberal or of any other sort. It was the victory of the Rwandan people (the demos) exercising their legitimate power (kratos) to rebuff the attempts of those who wanted to confiscate that right from its rightful owners.
Over 30,000 people were inside the Amahoro National Stadium on Friday to witness Presidential Inauguration. File.
Over 30,000 people were inside the Amahoro National Stadium on Friday to witness Presidential Inauguration. File.

Editor,
RE: “‘Liberal democracy’ Vs the Rwandan people, who won?” (The New Times, August 19).

The premise is all wrong; it had nothing to do with any alleged conflict between the Rwandan people and democracy, liberal or of any other sort. It was the victory of the Rwandan people (the demos) exercising their legitimate power (kratos) to rebuff the attempts of those who wanted to confiscate that right from its rightful owners.

Commentators need to eschew the temptation to accept the narratives of those trying to cast the discussion in ways that aim at giving false legitimacy to their attempts at replacing Rwandans’ own choices for themselves with their own preferences. Theirs are not efforts at democracy-promotion (liberal or unqualified). Theirs is an attempt to continue their neo-colonial hold over our choices.

And, given our experience with the extremely damaging consequences of not being our own masters but rather being forced by lack of democratic control of our own affairs to dance to other people’s tunes (tunes, moreover that they change as their whims dictate), today’s Rwandans are determined to plot our own course. As we have just found out.

Let those who love to lecture incessantly about others’ democracy resolve the obvious democratic deficits in their own home countries. Or, perhaps, is the continuous rise in alleged democracy-promotion in foreign countries a function of the realization the situation of democracy is so dire in their own countries there is little they can do to improve it?

Mwene Kalinda

 

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