FDU’S Ingabire Victoire coming for Presidential elections, what’s in her briefcase for Rwandans?

On September 28, 2008 in The Hague, FDU-INKINGI held a meeting during which the coalition members decided to take part in the 2010 Presidential elections.

On September 28, 2008 in The Hague, FDU-INKINGI held a meeting during which the coalition members decided to take part in the 2010 Presidential elections.

The communiqué issued after the meeting argued that they were compelled to do so as they were“…determined to put an end to the vicious circle of exclusion and ensure individual and collective freedoms with the mission of establishing a democratic and multi-party system…”

I must reckon that this was good news indeed. One of the most vocal and virulent so-called opposition groups admits, at least implicitly, that fair elections will be held in Rwanda.

This is a tremendous evolution on the part of  FDU-Inkingi as not much long, such as during a meeting in Brussels between 23 to 25 February, 2007, the coalition’s political council stated that “…FDU-Inkingi would subordinate any participation in the next elections (legislative elections scheduled for 2008 and presidential elections scheduled for 2010 to the following conditions: (i) the prosecution of Paul Kagame before competent courts; (ii) the liberation of political and opinion prisoners;(iii) the reform of the current Constitution and(iv) the ending of voluntary repatriation of refugees…”

Whether this is a real change of heart or not, if FDU-Inkingi’s participation was to ever materialize, they would be the most beneficiaries.

Indeed, this would be a great opportunity for people like Victoire Ingabire to be educated on the achievements Rwandans are continuously securing through a truly ongoing revolution.

We trust Ingabire would be mesmerized by what she would see in her country after more than fifteen years of her absence and hope that she would be fair enough to herself to testify that the Rwanda she has been talking about has nothing to do with the new Rwanda.

However, will she be able to depart from the obsolete discourse she inherited from her own RDR party? Will she be able to denounce the suicidal genocide ideology of her party’s founding fathers?

One doubts particularly when you genuinely look at her party’s persistent utterances, some of which dangerously divisive and completely unpalatable in present Rwanda.

Let us remind our readers that the group was formed in DRC and Tanzania’s refugee camps in 1996 and was called RDR (Rally for Democracy and Return of Refugees in Rwanda).

It was mainly composed of politicians and military leaders from the late Juvenale Habyarimana’s government or those who took over after his death as “Abatabazi government” that executed the genocide.

Their main objective was to return the Rwandan refugees forcefully and to topple the government of National Unity. This was a response by the ex-FAR and an alternative to the Abatabazi government that according to their analysis had been subjected to media and diplomatic embargo.

RDR was officially launched on April 3, 1995, with its headquarters in France and later in Belgium and the Netherlands and Canada, where it has been operating since.

The public should also be aware that this organization was created with the assistance of priests from the “missionaries of Africa”, a Belgian branch of the Internationale Democrate-Chrétien (IDC). Its members, particularly the top hierarchy, were drawn from among the genocidaires.

Some of them were former ministers such as its first president François Nzabahimana, Habyarimana’s minister of commerce from 1991 to 1992.

In an attempt to whitewash such a background, RDR has been relentlessly tying knots with other groupings not having overtly been involved in genocide.

These groupings are normally composed of self-exiled refugees running from justice or army deserters with judicial cases in courts.

They spent years trying to come together, a long process that took them from the original RDR (led by Victoire INGABIRE UMUHOZA), FRD (led by Eugène NDAHAYO), ADR-Isangano (led by Jean Baptiste MBERABAHIZI) up to the current FDU-Inkingi which hopes to be the succeeding umbrella organization to meet the opposition unity challenge.

The three parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 29th April 2006. But it is not only their infamous background that one should keep in mind; their very program should also be of concern.

Thus, “…in case of victory, the UDF-INKINGI will put in place a transitional Government of national unity (GUNT) which among other things will hold “Direct negotiations with all armed groups in exile in 2011.” 

But to achieve all this, the coalition does not intend to rely on Rwandans’ support but rather to an old ally they are sure will not disappoint them.

Among other things “…to this regard we hope to be able to intend on the direct, indirect and multiform support of France to come up with this process notably making all necessary political pressures so that the RPF lifts the obstacles and gives the controllable guarantees for the progress of the aforesaid process… the Rwandan people traumatized by the anguishes of the endless wars and genocides (sic) since October 1990, it is important that France comes out of its muteness and use its power so that the international community and all countries respectful of human rights exercise a constant pressure on the Rwandan regime in order to coerce President Kagame and his close dignitaries, whose serious criminal machinations have been denounced with precision by the French and Spanish justice, to answer to their crimes.

Well, as a Rwandan saying goes, ‘those with eyes listen to little and see the most by themselves…’ We will be discussing in this column the discourse of FDU-Inkingi and the other groups that make up this so-called political family which, well-knowing that the informed and well-intentioned members of the international community and Rwandans in particular can no longer support divisive politics characteristic of such groups, continues to outwardly mutate to cover-up their true ideological identity.


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