Rwandans in the Diaspora will cast their votes a day earlier in the August Presidential polls, the National Electoral Commission (NEC), has revealed.
According to NEC Executive Secretary, Charles Munyaneza, the commission has set August 8 as the voting day for the Diaspora, to enable Rwandans overseas to have ample time to travel to their respective polling centres, which will mainly be diplomatic missions.
Presidential elections are slated for August 9.
“August 8 will fall on Sunday, which is favourable for people in Diaspora. The voting day here will be a public holiday in Rwanda which will not be the case in other countries,” said Munyaneza.
NEC expects the number of voters in Diaspora to double once registration is over.
“We have so far registered close to 20,000 voters from the Diaspora and we hope the number will increase since we are still registering,” added Munyaneza.
Close to 16,000 Rwandans abroad participated in the parliamentary elections that took place in 2008.
The commission also has plans to open up more than one polling station in large countries and to also establish new ones in countries where Rwanda does not have diplomatic representations.
Rwanda currently has a total of 20 diplomatic missions.