So Pierre-Célestin Rwigema is back from self-imposed exile. And he has apologized to Rwandans and has given his reasons for erring. It is as it should be. An honourable man should own up to his misconduct. And a man who has rediscovered his honour should be forgiven his lapses and welcomed.
That he could have stooped so low as to peddle such cheap lies as accused the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) of bulldozing its way into changing the country’s flag, among other despicable accusations, when he knew very well that he was in the cabinet that gave the final nod to that decision, even as he belonged to Mouvement Démocratique Républicain (MDR), was appalling in the extreme.
Whoever misled you, Rwigema, must be condemned in the strongest terms. What did he take you for? A toddler who had forgotten that he had made a decision? And they are many, those hoodwinkers. But we know them and know that their hollow ware will never sell. The good that Rwanda stands for will always stand her in good stead, come rain, sunshine or dupers.
But if this return and that of Gerald Ntashamaje before Rwigema (and those of others before them and to come soon) are to tell us anything, it is that Rwanda should continue to bring down the axe hard on all miscreant behaviour. It is evident that the intention of all those who flee their country in fear of the strict laws of Rwanda catching up with them and turn round to insult their compatriots is to propagate the image of a country that is still fragile.
By that ruse, they hope to join the ranks of the cabal of self-made do-gooders and sham experts whose livelihood depends on a world community that believes that their mal-predictions on Rwanda will come true. A world community that carries the guilt of not having come to the aid of Rwandans in their time of need is susceptible to deceit because it dreads a repeat of the same oversight.
The result is an over-pouring of sympathy and its accompanying material bounty to these conwo/men and interference in the affairs of their object of abuse, which is the Rwandan government in this case. What the conwo/men don’t know is that their object of abuse is a government that has been armoured against any affront by a people inside their country who recognized the abuse and has forged the ultimate weapon to fend it off for good.
A reconciled and united people are an unassailable force. They are a force that laughs off such inane cons and treats them with the contempt they deserve.
So some politicians who thought government positions were meal-cards to government kitty saw the short (not long!) arm of the law closing in on them and took to their heels, crying: “Minority ethnic domination!” And the army of rights do-gooders and bankrupt experts took up the refrain with: “We said it, you see! Fragile state sliding back into strife.” Meanwhile, in government, it was business as usual.
Other politicians thought they could ride on the back of the all-too-familiar ethnic division card – which they’d been used to – and come to pick their ‘rightful’ vote from “my people” but saw themselves trounced. They cried out: “Ariko murasetsa! Don’t make me laugh, you mean my people can vote for somebody else? No, they are forced.” The nay-saying international wordsmiths went to work: “Strong-arm and despotic rule!” “My people” looked on in mild bemusement and went on with their work.
Then the mothers of all politicians picked their roaring ring of escorts and stomped the gates of Rwanda, their White genocide-deniers and Rwandan genocide-convicts baying for blood. The gates of Rwandan prisons opened up and happily welcomed them and now Rwandans are laughing all the way into their dignified-development shuttle-vehicle. And what a clean road that vehicle is riding!
And now they are beginning to see the light and say they are sorry? Who wouldn’t be sorry if they saw they could not be part of a good thing? Rwigema, you chose the honourable path: “Anyone following Rwanda’s evolution would wish to be part of it. This is why I chose to come back and be part of the good cause…..In some challenging situations, we are often asked to think correctly and think big….” Aren’t we, Rwigema, aren’t we? They’ll think big, too, those prodigal sons/daughters of ours. We know they will.
But the axe – nay, the guillotine – will continue to come down hard on they that will abuse Rwandans. It will always be the guillotine for anyone who thinks they can heap insults on Rwandans with impunity again, however hard the international community may wish to sanitise their abuses by couching them in democracy and freedom-of-speech melodies and whatever other tunes they like to use. That guillotine, though, must be understood for what it is used to mean here: the power of the law of the land.
In Rwanda, the constitution is queen. And she will always reign and lead us in the fight against the enemy, whom we have identified. Come, Rwandans within and without, let’s together take up the chant. Death to our enemy: division, genocide-negation, poverty, ignorance, graft, self-scorn, say it!
The march forward is unyielding and unstoppable. No force in the world will ever stand in its way. Ever!