La légion de semeurs de haine est dans un dilemme! Yes, they are the Francophone hate-mongering legion. And they are in a quandary. Their object of hate is not living up to the expected low, primitively dictatorial image that they’ve worked so hard to mint for the world. The new Rwandan parliament has the haters’ favoured “true” opposition parties? And then, before they can blink, the government releases two thousand-plus prisoners? Including, inexplicable of all inexplicables, their precious “political” prisoners? The hate-mongers must post-haste act lest they find all their trump cards pulled from under their feet. Rwanda must remain a reflection of their crafted crass standard. In that effort, then, these so-called experts on all matters Rwandan, the likes of Filip Reyntjens, André Gichaoua and the rest of the hollering hoard, have their heads in the dustbin. They are rummaging for any castoff rubbish to explain the motives driving this government’s actions. What feeds their avid abhorrence of this busy-bee country, search me! In the case of Reyntjens, I can understand. In 1995 or thereabouts, I remember sighting a shaggy, safari-suit-clad fella expansively swaggering his way to every government office, a constitutionalism guru ready to offer his expertise to a ‘cobbled-together’ government. When he was snubbed everywhere, he went back a bewildered man. These unworldly Rwandans, did they know his mastery of their country? When he attempted a return, his visa application didn’t make it beyond the Embassy’s in-tray! Not only did Rwandans know him but they also knew the terror his co-authored constitution had wrought on this country. As for Gichaoua (soon also Pierre Péan, Charles Onana, etc?), Lucifer alone knows what animates their loathing. Lucre, doled out by remnants of the French old guard that financed the bloodbath that sullied this land? Be that as it may, now they are all rising from their slumber. They’ve smelt blood (read “chance”) and now can corner their prey. So, they are circling the government, barking: “It must be the urge to win the Francophonie chair! It must be pressure from the West! Blah, blah!” And as town criers, you know them. Where one sets the tone, others, whatever ‘-phone’, must chorus in solidarity. And so here we are, hearing but letting pass their expected hyena cries. The usual suspect Western media outlets, with their ‘piggy-backing’ rights defence-pretenders, are up in their cacophonic laughter, like hyenas in season. Pointing to this forgotten example, that past incident, whatever they lift from the dustbin; all quoting and repeating themselves, as they’ve always done over and over. Till they drop silent, realising they only raise our curiosity but do not excite our fear. Rise and shine, boys and girls, it’s always a new dawn in Rwanda. And every morning, she explodes many myths and springs many surprises. Mud to smear, you’ll find none. Nada, zip! As the enforcement of the law is unyielding, so is the forgiving heart voluminous. As the jaws of classic justice are ever ready to clamp on she/he who flouts the law, so are cultural practices perforce obeyed in the name of the reconciliation, unity and progress of this society. Any political party or individual that mends their ways and becomes amenable to being part of the advancement of this nation is welcomed with open arms. But stray again into the ways of division and it’ll be the lockup for you. No one and nothing from outside prompts or, worse, commands this government into treating us, the citizenry, this way or that way. It’s answerable to none but us. Or else, one Peter Erlinder, an American lawyer, or one Guy Theunis, a Belgian priest, coming from powerful countries as they did, wouldn’t have seen what they saw. They came straddling this land like Colossuses, the former to defend the then suspected but now-forgiven terrorist-supporting Ingabire Victoire U. The latter, flaunting his record as having been complicit in the Genocide against the Tutsi. Both found themselves in pink shorts and sleeves, each clutching a toilet tissue roll, going to nurse their little egos in prison, as ordered by traditional Gacaca courts. As for our pressure-deluded prodigal daughter now back in the fold, continue flapping your sewing-machine-needle-speed tongue to rap discord at your own peril. The jaws of justice that tucked you in are still open. Also, the from-rags-to-government-sponsored-riches songster. In the golden words of our ancestors and as emphasized by President Kagame, abwirwa benshi… (those who have ears...). Nobody can put this leadership to the grill. Otherwise, for cooperation and partnership, as commanded by the need for the advancement of all involved, this leadership is ready for all. Individuals, organisations, countries. All on the basis of mutual understanding. Never, but never, on anyone else’s terms. And wherever it has happened, value has been added. Some recalcitrant characters have sabotaged things here (at our borders?) and there but, all in all, they are passing clouds. Rwandophone, Anglophone, Francophone, etc, we all gain from our diversity. If the African Development Bank has seen this, the African Union is seeing this, others, too, why should La Francophonie be blind to it? Yes, collaboration is always a win-win for all sizes involved. firstname.lastname@example.org The views expressed in this article are of the author.