By Godfrey Ntagungira
Rwanda Interfaith Commission (ICR) on Tuesday lauded the National electoral Commission for the recent presidential elections held in 9 August Presidential Elections, saying they were conducted in a smooth and orderly way.
“The 9 August Presidential Elections in Rwanda were conducted in a peaceful atmosphere. Rwanda is undergoing a process of national reconstruction and the country has taken great strides. As part of this reconstruction the country has, to its credit, embarked on a process of establishing electoral democracy “said ICR chairman, the retired Archbishop of the Anglican Church, Emmanuel Kolini at a party held at Laico Hotel.
Rwanda interfaith commission is a faith based body that brings together all the religious groups in the country.
“I was a victim of our tarnished history of our beautiful country and I understand the terrible legacy of the past, so as Interfaith Commission of Rwanda we have got a cause to thank God for the peaceful presidential elections we had and also to give a token of thanks to the national electoral body for the job well done’ Emmanuel Kolini said.
The interfaith commission described the entire electoral process "very credible, transparent and free from all forms of corruption" and noted that ”The success of peacefully organized elections has shown to the world that Rwanda as a country has reached maturity as far as political matters are concerned,” he said.
Kolini also noted that the commission was very careful and thorough at all level of the electoral process and the Election Commission has set a foundation for the upcoming elections of the 2011 local government elections in Rwanda.
He also said that Rwanda has been through so much, so much hurt, so much pain, so much violence, so much going against this small country! May God shower Rwanda with His grace and mercy! Amen.
Speaking further, on the issue of the management of the electoral process, NEC was well prepared for the elections and exhibited high standards of organisation, which added confidence to the process.
“What I saw during the recent concluded presidential elections, there are positive developments I have found a well organised and peaceful poll.
“The National Electoral Commission conducted the technical aspects very well, NEC officers worked professionally and diligently in their management of the process which provided assurance to the people to turn out in large numbers” he said.
On behalf of the ICR leadership, Kolini hailed the NEC for ensuring that the elections in Rwanda were held in conformity to better standards. “Rwanda has made huge strides since 1994 and these elections represent another important stage in the country’s development, this is a clear indication that democracy in Rwanda has matured”
Celebrating the achievement at hotel Laico at Kacyiru, he noted that the function was aimed at appreciating NEC authorities for their contributions in the Presidential elections that were held on August 9.
Interfaith Commission of Rwanda applauded the national electoral commission for the recent peaceful and democratic elections.
“We were pleased with the NEC for the way in which the elections were conducted. Rwanda electoral commission has set the stage for other upcoming elections and called on the electoral body employees again to roll up their sleeves because they have a very cardinal role to play in next year's local government elections”.
After giving thanks to God for the support towards the electoral process the Anglican priest said he was pleased that what was promised has been fulfilled: a flawless election.
"I am pleased to use this moment to express my heartfelt thanks and appreciation to the entire NEC staff the way you conducted a peaceful and conducive atmosphere, I believe the peaceful manner in which you conducted the elections you demonstrated to ordinary Rwandans and the world at large that NEC are indeed intelligent and, above all, a unique professional organization." he said.
Prof. Dr. KARANGWA Chrysologue, Chairperson of the National Electoral Commission (NEC) urged the religious leaders to "deepen relations among the faith denominations because their followers are watching their deeds.
“It is better that you set good example as watchdogs of society.” Ordinarily, the conclusion is that our people have become more participatory, I also want to advise you religious leaders to uphold the dignity and pride of your noble calling.
The NEC chairman also passed a vote of thanks to ICR leadership for their support during the electoral process
Karangwa thanked the Interfaith Commission of Rwanda for the good collaboration with the commission before and during the elections period which he said was one of the factors that enabled electoral body to perform very well.
“Every Rwandan now, knows it is his or her right to elect a leader civic and voter education has gone well. The turnout was generally excellent and we promise to strengthen the working relations with the Interfaith Commission of Rwanda during the upcoming local government elections scheduled for early 2011”he added.