Author Archives: admin

Dear Simon Turner, don’t jump off a cliff

Towards the end of 2012 as I lived in South Africa, I receive a call from my Danish friend Andreas Christensen in Kigali. He is outraged by a report he read on the website of the Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS). As a good Danish citizen he frequently consults DIIS’s space to be informed about world politics, and know ...

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To Sana Maboneza, Yesterday…

Since yesterday, John Lennon’s song has been playing through my mind: Yesterday: ‘Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away, Now it looks as though they’re here to stay, Oh I believe, in yesterday…’   I hear it and I cry, for dire news’ coming from afar. News of death, news of despair… Somebody keep the news away from me, ...

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Lonzen Rugira, the unusual Rwandan

Overtime, some of us had given up on reading the New Times. We felt life was too short, so we’d perused the headings and move on. Every now and then, someone we admire would be published in there and share the link – then we’d read. So when Lonzen Rugira came about, I was clueless. My father was the first ...

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Rich Kigalians piss on rural poor, and call it rain…

Yesterday morning the Central Bank was celebrating the over-subscription to the Rwf 15 billion, three-year government Treasury bond that it issued. On a closer look however I found it worrying that eight bids out of 23 were subscribed by Umerenge SACCO at 12%. Before I proceed, let me give a recap of what Umurenge-SACCO are, their mission and the identity ...

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Victoire Ingabire and Aung San Suu Kyi: The fabulous story of fake twins and fake parents

At first I thought it was all my fault. “‘You’re brainwashed by the government’s ‘propaganda machine’”, foreign colleagues told me, all enamored of Ingabire Victoire. They wondered how I personally and all Rwandans could not see the star that Ingabire really was. They painted a heroic profile of her, compared her to Aung San Suu kyi, the Burmese heroine. Imagine ...

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Constitutions in the world: The Rwandan Example

PRESIDENTIAL TERM LIMIT IN AFRICAN CONSTITUTIONS: TOWARDS A BIASED (RE) DEFINITION OF DEMOCRACY? EMPHASIS ON RWANDA Are constitutions adopted for eternity? Do we, on purpose, and when it suits us, avoid reading clauses of the constitution that provide for whether and how the “fundamental law” may be amended? If the people are sovereign and the sole owners of the constitution, ...

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Founding Principles v. Realpolitik: The struggle for state-building

The eternal rivalry between realpolitik and supreme principles is known to all freedom fighters and seasoned politicians, all those who’ve been involved in struggles for revolution, and the more challenging struggle for stabilization and human emancipation. Rwandan leaders aren’t exempt from that struggle, then, and now. Winning that war implies maintaining the balance between the two fundamentals: Realpolitik and supreme ...

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‘You may write us down in history; Still, we rise!

‘You may write me down in history; With your bitter, twisted lies, You may tread me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I’ll rise… Does my sassiness upset you? Why are you beset with gloom? ‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells Pumping in my living room… … You may shoot me with your words, You may ...

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A world fit for mothers and children

Shakespeare to Horatio: ‘There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy’. Hamlet Act 1, scene 5 I was met this morning by the refreshing smile of young mother Annet, in office early, after she’d just had a baby girl named Kwera. I then thought about my Cacahouette; Lilian, who just had baby ...

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