Rwanda’s political parties have started the wrap up of their election campaigns, after two weeks of intense cross country vote canvassing. Under normal circumstances voters would by now be convinced of the political party they will vote for.
In short the reason for the campaigns is to woo people to vote in favour of a party of their choice according to commitments it makes in its manifesto that stipulate its policy direction in various areas of economic and political governance.
In that regard a quick random survey carried out by The New Times on the streets of Kigali people had this to say about the forth coming elections.
Mukiza Mike a motorcyclists who operates at Rubangura stage says that voting for our leaders is the best way forward for the country.
“That’s good democracy. A commoner having a role in how he should be led or in the direction his country takes. If you vote for a person who will in the end represent you badly in the parliament, the next time you get to know how you will vote basing on the accomplishment of the good things promised by the out going leaders.”
Mukiza says that electing leaders is a good practice since the people elected get to know that power is in the hands of the common person.
“It’s only that we are many and can’t sit in the parliament all of us to discuss issues pertaining to our social life. But one of us whom we elect through the party we vote for, has the mandate to represent us and only do what is in the interest of the people he leads.
Shyaka Joseph, 34 years old also a motorcyclist says that credit should go to the government for such a development where leaders are brought to public scrutiny during election time.
“We now can vote for the President of our choice in free and fair elections. Similarly our representatives are elected through our parties that we vote for. This is therefore good thing for our society and will provide a platform for every Party to equally convince the public, that they are worth voting for.
Karuhanga Moses, 24 years who stays in Kabeza says: “I am waiting for a date only and I show my gratitude to FPR for the good they have done to the people. For example, look at the tarmac road that connects Giporoso and Kabaze where I stay.
Just some months back every one used to complain about the dust but now it’s a place one can be proud of.
Karuhanga says that he is optimistic even those in the opposition can see the good things the ruling party FPR has done
“I am sure there are those that belong to other parties who will vote for FPR not because they have turned to it but because there is something tangible done for the people,” says Karuhanga.
As I continued to ask people’s feelings about the forth coming elections, a person passed by me in PSD T-shirt. This is when I knew that parties are doing all it takes to have the vote cast in their favor.
Jean de Dieu dressed in a white T-shirt with letters PSD both in front and behind says that he is happy for every party is rendered the opportunity to reach out to people and prepare rallies for the campaigns.
“Our party (PSD) has three objectives that we use as our slogan. Ubutabera, Ubwisungane na Majyambere meaning (Justice, Cooperation and Development), and I hope we shall win a number of representatives in the forth coming elections.”
However he says that parties were not given enough time to explain clearly to the population their motives and what they intend to do when voted for.
He appeals to every responsible Rwandan above the age of 18 year to come out and vote on the 15th September.
“It’s upon people to decide on what to do. I am waiting to cast my vote right when it comes to time,” says De Dieu.”
Even the handicapped participate in choosing leaders of their choice. Bernard Nyamujede seated in his wheel-chair at Rubangura Taxi Park, says that voting is very good since people would have taken part in choosing the direction of their nation.
However, Nyamujede says that people voted for always do their own things when they get to their seats in parliament.
“You can’t imagine I have not seen our representative in the parliament from the time he was elected. He has never come back to inquire from us what is bothering us as the handicapped. So now imagine if he came for a second term. Would I really vote for him?” Asks Nyamujede.
Nyamujede who sits on the committee of the handicapped of Nyarugege district, says that at least if there was a law that paves way for a vote of no confidence against those who do not perform accordingly, then voting would be of great meaning to the ordinary people.