Category Archives: Rwanda

Rwanda – New PM

President Kagame has appointed a new prime minister. The previous incumbent, Bernard Mazuka, was in office since March 2000. He has now been appointed Vice President of the Senate.

The new PM is Pierre Habumuremyi. He was previously Minister for Education. That is all the information I have!

Rwanda – Senate election

Rwanda held Senate elections on 26-27 September. Details are very hard to come by. However, the new institution has met and elected a president. He is Jean Damascene Ntawukuriryayo and he was elected by 20 votes to 4.

The Senate was established in 2003 and serves for an 8-year term. So, this was only the second Senate election. There are 26 Senators, 12 of whom are now elected in multi-member constituencies by local councillors, and 1 each by the public and private universities respectively. In addition, the President of the Republic appoints 8 Senators and the National Consultative Forum of Political Organisations appoints the final 4 Senators. At least 30% of the institution must be women.

There are some details about the electorate and who was elected here. There are some details about the electoral law here. The list of Senators is available here. No party affiliations are provided, but it can safely be assumed that the new institution is unlikely to challenge President Kagame.

Rwanda – Presidential election

The presidential election in Rwanda was held on Monday. The result was, to say the least, not a surprise.

The New Times of Rwanda is reporting the preliminary results announced by the National Electoral Commission. They indicate the following:

Paul Kagame (Rwandan Popular Front) – 92.9 per cent
Jean Damascene Ntawukuriryayo (Social Democratic Party) – 4.9 per cent Prosper Higiro (Liberal party) – 1.5 per cent
Alvera Mukabaramba (Party for Progress and Concord) – 0.7 per cent

So, incumbent president, Paul Kagame, has been re-elected.

Rwanda – Constitutional amendments

Once again, the wonderful Constitution en Afrique site has provided information that otherwise might have slipped through the net.

The site reports that a law reforming the Rwandan constitution was passed in August. The law made a host of fairly minor amendments to the 2003 constitution.

The reforms do not make any fundamental changes to the nature of the semi-presidential system, but they do make a host of minor changes relating to the president’s powers, the process of government formation , the powers of the government, the dissolution of the parliament and so on.

The new version of the constitution is available in English here. The 2003 version of the constitution is available here.

Rwanda – Legislative election

In Rwanda voting took place in the legislative election on 15 and 16 September. The National Electoral Commission has posted the following results:

Turnout 98.5%
Valid votes of those cast: 98.8%

RPF-LED COALITION, 3,655,956, 78.76%, 42 seats
PSD, 609,327, 13.12%, 7 seats
PL, 348,186, 7.5%, 4 seats
HARELIMANA J.M.V, 27,848, 0.6%, 0 seats

So, President Paul Kagame’s ruling RPF party (and its coalition allies) has won an overwhelming majority. It would be somewhat misleading to call the PSD and PL ‘opposition parties’. They are still close to the RPF.

The voting to elect the remaining deputies has been completed. These deputies are elected indirectly by various panels. The names are on the Electoral Commission website, but not party affiliations. Rest assured that most will not be too far from the RPF.

Rwanda – Parliament dissolved

On 15 August President Paul Kagame dissolved the Rwandan parliament. The election will be held on 15 September.

Rwanda is not classed as an electoral democracy by Freedom House and it is not classed as even a partial democracy by either Freedom House or Polity. The system is dominated by the RPF party, which is fighting the election in coalition with six other small parties. Last time the RPF won 70% of the seats and it is unlikely to do any worse this time around.

In the election 53 seats are directly elected and another 27 seats are then allocated to under-represented groups, 24 of which go to women. Recall that Rwanda has the highest female representation in any national parliament at 48% last time.