The recent presidential election was a true measure of the significant progress Rwandans have made on the journey of reconciliation, the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission (NURC) has said.
The poll, which incumbent President Paul Kagame won overwhelmingly by 98.8 per cent of the votes cast, was also an important opportunity to consolidate the unity and reconciliation of the people of Rwanda, it said in a statement signed by Retired Anglican Bishop John Rucyahana, the commission chairperson.
The commission said the poll also “showcased citizens’ patriotism and commitment to participating in the governance of their country, their unity, and Rwandan values.”
NURC said that, during the elections, Rwandans put country and the general good first, proving they had moved beyond divisions based on ethnicity, nepotism, religion and region.
It said it had deployed observers in each of the country’s 416 sectors during the presidential campaigns and on the Election Day and their reports showed that each of the candidates and Rwandans in general had conducted themselves with nobility and in conformity to Rwandan values.
NURC also thanked the National Electoral Commission for a job well done.
Kagame’s opponents in the vote scraped a handful of votes, with independent candidate Philippe Mpayimana coming in a distant second, with 0.73 per cent, while Democratic Green Party of Rwanda’s Frank Habineza polled 0.48 per cent.
Nearly 6.8 million Rwandans participated in the vote, with Rwandan Diasporans (close to 40,000) casting their vote on Thursday, August 3, while their compatriots back home went to polls the next day, Friday, August 4.