URUGWIRO VILLAGE - President Paul Kagame, yesterday, said that the country is on the right track and the remarkable results of the efforts of its people, in terms of development and democracy, are visible.
Speaking at the monthly press conference at Urugwiro Village, President Kagame accused the international media of attempting to tell Rwanda’s story through individuals who harbour selfish political interests.
As the country prepares for the August Presidential elections, there has been a surge in negative reporting on Rwanda.
“The international media may prefer to focus on a few individual adventurers here in the city, and outside the country, to tell the story of these people (Rwandans),” Kagame said.
“Rwandans must be the ones to speak for themselves, it’s not a few city dwellers and others who want to shape the story of the whole country on false basis.”
The President noted that the country is progressing socially and economically in all aspects.
Kagame, pointed out that it was unfortunate that some people are taking advantage of the upcoming elections to project an nonexistent crisis or crackdown.
“Nearing a period like this, of elections, there is heightened political activity and this tends to be exploited by people for various intentions and given different interpretations,” he said.
“Even criminals come up and want to claim a place in the political process to lead our country.”
The President emphasised that the country has laws everyone must abide by, adding that being an election period does not guarantee immunity to individuals who break them.
Kagame rubbished claims by international organisations such as Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International that Rwanda is experiencing a crisis, adding that the Rwandan people are not under any tension.
The President took a swipe at the two Rights organisations, saying that Rwanda is a country whose existence does not depend on them and whatever they say about Rwanda is of little value.
Kagame said that it was unfortunate and “unacceptable” that the media fraternity lost one of its own, Jean Leonard Rugambage, a journalist who was shot and killed on Thursday outside his home.
“I have instructed everyone, the police, the intelligence, the army, they have to make sure we get those who did it. We will not rest until we get to the bottom of this and make it clear to everyone,” he said.
“We don’t need to lose anybody, at that, somebody called a journalist, not only for his right to live, but for us not to attract the kind of image that we shouldn’t be having at this time.”
In reference to the former Rwandan Ambassador to India, Kayumba Nyamwasa, the President noted that Rwanda pursues those wanted by the courts of law through the right processes, and that the country was and is still negotiating with the Government of South Africa on how the renegade officers can be brought to face the law.