Many Kenyans and Ugandans resident in Rwanda have watched the unfolding events of the demonstrations against the politically motivated arrest of Chief of State Protocol, Rose Kabuye, in utmost unbelief.
The on-going public demonstrations against the German and French governments’ conspiracy to blatantly arrest individuals who stopped the wanton murder of innocent people in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsis, is at best, a lesson to Rwanda’s eastern neighbours, that a not necessarily go along with violent riots, looting and chaotic.
In spite of the fact that the issue at hand would leave any victim very passionate and angry, Rwandans have instead conducted peaceful, banner carrying, chanting marches culminating into organised rallies at the German Embassy or near the Radio Deutshe Wella offices.
In stark comparison, last December in Kisumu, the home of the then head of Kenyan opposition and now Prime Minister erupted into looting of shops when the election results were showing a landslide victory for Raila Odinga in the presidential race.
They claimed that the looted goods were ‘gifts’ from Odinga’s Orange Democratic Movement which was about to take power. Two days later the same people were rioting and looting because they had been robbed of an election victory.
The graveness of that matter aside, it shows how Kenyans will riot both in sadness and happiness in equal measure. This is just a recent example of a culture of stone throwing that has been nurtured in secondary schools, perfected in universities and actively encouraged by Kenyan politicians for their own selfish interests.
This culture of hooliganism had made the areas around Kenyans premier institution of higher leaning, University of Nairobi, a no-go area even for any flimsy reason as a power cut on campus which would usually result in stoning of drive by cars and neighboring buildings.
The sight of all taxi drivers and conductors choosing to get out of their seats on a Tuesday afternoon to join hands with the rest of the country in supporting a cause would sound laughable in Nairobi Kenya’s capital city or Kampala, in Uganda.
Diogène, a Kigali driver, said that Rwandan people are peaceful people and would not like to give any excuse to the same anti-Rwanda elements that instead of arresting the genocidaires resident on their territories have resorted to covering their guilt in these nonsensical incitements.
In Nairobi, the matatu sector is famously organised under illegal cartels that extort a percentage of each vehicle’s daily revenues, defiance to pay up would promptly cause your vehicle to go be burnt.
In Uganda, a demonstration against the give away of Mabira forest to industrialists of Asian origin last year resulted in the unjustified lynching of innocent people of Asian origin on Kampala’s streets.
It is normal practice in both Kenya and Uganda for petty thieves and pickpockets to take advantage of any public demonstrations to inflict damage on fellow protestors and bystanders.
Michael Wanjala, a Ugandan resident in Kigali remarked at the deep sense of humility and displayed by Rwandans.
“If it was back home, citizens of the targeted countries would be wary of walking freely on the streets,” he continued, “this is one of the things that East Africans have to learn from Rwanda.”