Yesterday Rwandans turned up in big numbers to elect their next Members of Parliament after three weeks of campaigns across the country.
Preliminary results were expected to start trickling in last night. As we receive the results, the winners should celebrate the victory but bearing in mind the huge task that lies ahead. The win means that Rwandans have entrusted you with the responsibility to lead them to prosperity and development.
The winners should focus on the implementation of development issues they articulated in their manifestos. And for the losers, they are expected to take the result with humility and concede defeat. Conceding defeat is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of maturity and differentiates opportunists from true nationalists.
Even without going to parliament, the losers can still contribute in their respective capacities toward national development. By press time, reports from individual observers and polling officials indicated that the elections were free and fair.
By the close of voting yesterday, there were no reported cases of election malpractices or violence, a common scene during polls in emerging economies. Both the losers, winners and voters must look forward to serious business after the politicking period.
Each one of us have a role to play in the development of the country. For any candidate who feels aggrieved, there are right channels to address your grievances. We should not use the outcome of the elections to engage in pity divisive politics.
Whoever contested in the polls, should reach out to their supporters and mobilise them to embrace peace and contribute toward development. Unity should be embraced in all spheres. The rejection of violence by voters re-emphasises the strong culture of unity and rejection of divisive politics.