Obama's lessons for Hollande on Rwanda

If you can’t recall any bully from your primary school chances are you were the one. And if you still have vivid memories of bullying from that time chances are you were the scrawny kid who was teased and beaten by the overgrown kids in your class, kids who should have been at least two or...

Monday, March 28, 2016, 12:00 AM

The President is angry

Public servants are not working up to expectations. President Paul Kagame estimates that the efforts they are currently putting forth amounts to a meagre 40 percent of their abilities. This lacklustre effort, he observed, has a debilitating effect on the country’s ability to achieve its...

Monday, March 21, 2016, 12:00 AM

Can EAC stumble and mumble to greatness?

This column last week catalogued some of the growing benefits of membership to the East African Community. More than that laundry list at the micro level, however, there is the macro picture that is equally tantalizing. Consider this: we know which country offers the formula for effective state...

Monday, March 14, 2016, 12:00 AM

South Sudan and Burundi: From Arusha with a bitter taste in the mouth

In his popularly acclaimed novel titled the “Tale of Two Cities” Charles Dickens has a passage in which he describes a certain period in history. Dickens goes, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the...

Monday, March 7, 2016, 12:00 AM

Burundi crisis: Nkurunziza's intransigence

The news is not good: Pierre Nkurunziza is intransigent. The man has stonewalled anyone who has tried to talk some sense into him so that the bloodshed may stop, so that some sanity may return to his country. He has ignored everyone at every level be it national, regional, continental or even...

Monday, February 29, 2016, 12:00 AM

Why they want you to 'get over colonialism'

Last week’s column on why our education systems fail elicited this reaction from a friend: “We should give up on the whole colonialism bandwagon and deal with the real issue.” I noticed the pronoun ‘we’ and recognised it as polite language that was due to a background...

Monday, February 15, 2016, 12:00 AM

Why our education fails on its promise

It is time to rethink the idea that Rwandans don’t debate. #RWoT is a group of Rwandans on Twitter that has been doing much to burst this myth. Their reactions before, during, and after the debates on the Anangwe Show suggest that what they have been missing is a platform to air the views....

Monday, February 8, 2016, 12:00 AM

Rwanda prospers because we are not good at foreign languages

Over the past couple of weeks this column has tried to point out how imported values, even when well-intentioned, can distort collective aspirations, and how the pursuit of ‘democracy of form’ undermines our efforts to engage society substantively on the changes that its members would...

Monday, February 1, 2016, 12:00 AM

‎Rwanda's democracy: Insist on defining 'the good life'

A fortnight ago in this column I pointed to two kinds of democracy: of form and of substance. I noted that the former distorts the true aspirations of its intended beneficiaries, that it ultimately undermines the emergence of the latter; and crucially, the drive towards the democracy of form over...

Monday, January 25, 2016, 12:00 AM

Honouring our armed forces: lessons from Kenya's tragedy

A couple years ago I wrote a piece in this column that was a subject of a heated debate with a colleague of mine who accused me of partisanship. In it I had wondered out loud whether we were doing enough to honour our armed forces given what they’ve had to sacrifice, many of which I had...

Monday, January 18, 2016, 12:00 AM

Rwanda and Burundi: Democracy at its best

A few of us ‘pundits’ were invited on the now popular TV show “Debate 411” that is hosted by the gregarious Eugene Anangwe to discuss democracy in Africa and, in particular, the communiqué by the United States in which it stated that it was “deeply disappointed...

Monday, January 11, 2016, 12:00 AM

Of constitution manoeuvres and spontaneity

Gatete views is one of the most popular blog sites on Rwanda’s politics. Thierry Gatete, its blogger, recently published a fascinating review of the constitution amending process in a piece he tilted “No ‘Goodluck Jonathan for Rwanda?” In it, he tears apart some of the...

Monday, January 4, 2016, 12:00 AM

Inside Kagame's shoes

Dear reader, this is about the unfinished business of ours. A few weeks back, if you recall, we used the metaphor of “Kagame’s shoes" to discuss the expectations that Rwandans have for the presidency of the Republic of Rwanda. We said that whether the person occupying that office will...

Monday, November 30, 2015, 12:00 AM

Burundi after Nkurunziza

Burundi’s embattled President Pierre Nkurunziza is clutching at straws. By Friday evening reports were circulating on social media that he is finally “willing to negotiate and wants immunity after leaving office.” He is probably several months tardy but it is never too late to do...

Monday, November 23, 2015, 12:00 AM

Mother Rwanda, who will protect her?

“I have always thought that those of us,” Professor Taban Lo Liyong, without excluding himself, began to explain the problem of the Western-educated African elite, “were taught to criticise Mother Africa and its leaders.” It is an observation that cannot simply be dismissed...

Monday, November 16, 2015, 12:00 AM

Poverty is not decreasing, let’s cause regime change

You heard the story: ‘Rwanda’s poverty is increasing rather than decreasing.’ The figures that the country has been publishing have all along been ‘doctored’ to paint the image that progress was taking place. Rwanda’s success story is not real. There is no...

Monday, November 9, 2015, 12:00 AM

Who wants to fill Kagame's shoes?

“So you want to fill the shoes of President Kagame?”Asked a Rwandan blogger recently in a series of questions in a popular post. “Oh, are you scared of coming out?” He, at once, asked and declared, “May those who want to succeed Kagame come forward: ‘speak now,...

Monday, November 2, 2015, 12:00 AM

Rwanda ties: Why Germany gets it

Developing countries, especially those in Africa, find themselves in a pickle. They have to choose partners among the most developed countries, with such relationships being crucial in a number of fronts: economic, diplomatic, and military, etc. Such ties help to inform foreign policy decisions of...

Monday, October 19, 2015, 12:00 AM

Why DR Congo is 'special'

Niger’s Maman Sidikou is the new UN Special Representative for the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Ban Ki-Moon, the UN Secretary General, appointed Dr Sidikou to replace Germany’s Martin Kobler making him the political head of MONUSCO, the peacekeeping force whose mandate is to bring...

Monday, October 12, 2015, 12:00 AM

The dog ate my homework ... and other vices that handed education to the canines

Education is a sensitive matter that evokes deep emotions. The feelings this arouses are often because education has the potential to impact one’s life chances. Nonetheless, we have often been satisfied with leaving it to the ‘professionals’ to discuss during policy forums,...

Monday, October 5, 2015, 12:00 AM

Follow The New Times on Google News