KIMIHURURA - The former Minister of Forestry, Christophe Bazivamo, was yesterday elected to the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA).
He replaces Damien Habumuremyi who was appointed Minister of Education in the recent Cabinet reshuffle.
During the elections involving Senators and Members of Parliament at the Parliamentary Buildings in Kimihurura, Bazivamo stood against Theogene Karinamaryo.
Karinamaryo is a former Mayor of the former Kanombe District before the country’s territorial restructuring that saw the district incorporated into Kicukiro.
The two had initially presented their candidatures to the National Electoral Commission (NEC), which approved them and sent them to Parliament.
Out of the 91 MPs and Senators who participated in the elections, 83 voted in favour of Bazivamo while Karinamaryo received only eight votes.
Campaigning before the House, both candidates spoke about their previous political and professional engagements and promised to represent the Rwandan community at EALA.
In an interview with The New Times after the polls, Bazivamo, who has previously occupied several ministerial posts, said that he is taking with him a lot of experience he acquired as public servant in Rwanda.
“The main role of a legislative assembly is to deal with laws, and with the experience I have acquired, I believe I am taking a good package to EALA since my main objective will be promoting the interests of my nation,” Bazivamo said.
He added that one of his greatest achievement as a minister was teamwork.
“Being cooperative, listening to my colleagues, sharing views and ideas is what I consider as the key to my success as a Minister,” said Bazivamo.
Bazivamo, 50, is an agriculturist by profession. He had his elementary education in the current Rulindo District and joined secondary school at Lycee de Kigali in 1975.
He joined the National University of Rwanda in 1981 where he graduated with a Bachelors Degree in agro-engineering. Between 1988 and 1989, he worked as a teacher. He pursued his Masters Degree in Germany.
After graduate school, Bazivamo worked with several NGOs until 1994.
After the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, he served as the Prefet of the then Gitarama Prefecture.
Later on, he became the first Executive Secretary of NEC until 2002, when he was appointed Local Government Minister.
Since then, he has held several ministerial posts in the Ministries of; Internal Security, Agriculture, Land, Environment, Forestry and Water and Mines.
Since 2002, he has been the vice chairperson of the Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF).
Bazivamo’s predecessor at EALA, Habumuremyi, was remaining with one year to the end of his five-year mandate. This implies that Bazivamo will serve for one year but can stand for re-election.