Women bag 55%
GASABO - The Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF-Inkotanyi) has run away with victory in this year’s Parliamentary elections taking 42 of the 53 seats that were contested for by all political parties and an independent candidate.
For the very first time in the history of parliamentary elections the world over, women widely outnumber the men, confident to bag at least 44 of the 80-seat chamber of deputies. This increases from 48 percent in the previous parliament to a world record of 55percent.
The number could go even higher if women candidates go through in the contest to get representatives youth and the disabled. Three seats are at stake.
According to the tentative results announced by the Chairman of the National Electoral Commission (NEC), Prof. Chrysologue Karangwa, the RPF’s win represents 78 percent of the votes.
By the time he announced the results, all votes cast had been counted save for some embassies that had not yet sent their results. Those included Japan, the United States of America, Canada and Sweden.
“But these votes will not affect much the outcome of the results we have because they are comparatively few,” said Karangwa at a press conference that took place at NEC Headquarters in Kimihurura.
The runners-up were the Socio-Democratic Party (PSD) who got seven seats representing 13 percent, while the Liberal Party (PL) got seven percent meaning that they will have four Parliamentarians in the 80-member House.
The independent candidate, Jean Marie Vianney Harerimana could not garner the required 5 percent victory to make it to Parliament as he got only 0.6 percent.
From the lists of candidates fielded by the political parties, the number of women from all parties who are assured of a place 20. Add the mandatory 24 seats that will come from the indirect women elections and you have a world record.
The women elections were conducted countrywide yesterday and Kigali City will have two seats, the Northern Province will have four, while the Eastern, Southern and the Western Provinces will each have six representatives.
Today youths elect their two representatives, while the national federation for the disabled elect their sole representative tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Karangwa said that the delay in receiving results from some embassies might have been as a result of differences in time zones between those countries and Rwanda.
He said that the general turn up was impressive as 98.5 percent of the 4,769,228 registered voters turned up for this election that was hailed by different people as very peaceful.
The NEC boss said that the general tentative results will be announced on September 22 after all elections are concluded, while official results will be announced on September 25.
Today, the European Union Electoral Observer Mission (EU EOM) is expected to release a preliminary report on how the elections went.