KIGALI - Huge crowds massed Saturday morning in all parts of the country to elect their village representatives on the Cell Executive Committees.
The elections which were conducted in all villages around the country also involved voting for women representatives in cell and sector committees which makes the 30 percent women representation as required by the law.
Jean Claude Musonera, the presiding officer at Rukiri 2 cell polling station in Remera shortly after the exercise, told the Sunday Times that the elections were smooth and that people turned up in big numbers.
“People turned up in big numbers and they expressed a lot of enthusiasm throughout the process,” Musonera said.
He added that these elections are critical because the process will lay a platform for effective representation of people’s opinions especially from the lower levels of administration.
People from five villages of Rebero, Amahoro, Ubumwe, Ruturutsi 1 and Ruturutsi 2 gathered at Rukiri 2 polling station to vote for their representatives.
The respective villages elected five representatives each on the Cell Executive Committees and five women representatives who will sit on the cell committees.
The exercise will resume on Sunday where those elected at this level will combine with those elected from other cells to form an electoral college that will in turn elect representatives for the Sector level.
Among those who made it on the Cell Executive Committees were Charles Karake, Theogene Niragire and Agathe Kayitesi.
“As a youth and a citizen, it’s my obligation to elect at such a critical level,” Emmanuel Niyonzima, one of the voters, said Voters queued behind the candidates of their choice
The new introduction in these elections is that to qualify to stand, a person has to have a high school education.
The biggest percentage of people who were voted in this position had at least a minimum of a bachelor’s degree, unprecedented in the history of local representation in the country.