Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Makes me MAD!!

Today is Tuesday, August 10 - day after the elections here in Rwanda.

My house is quiet this morning as I'm sitting here at my computer supposed to be doing financial reports but... I need to see what the world has said about yesterdays elections here in Rwanda.

What I know is that Paul Kagame has won with 92% with the other three parties dividing the rest of the votes. At least that is what Prince told me was announced on the TV this morning.

I know that I went to bed just after midnight and the city was alive with parties everywhere... I heard the vuvuzela's (and the World Cup thought they have them all!) and I was woken up by the fireworks at 4:30am this morning! Today was declared a holiday (I love Rwanda!)

I also know that many polling stations closed by mid morning because all the registered voters for that district had already cast their ballot. (Canada or the US only dreams of this!!) Serge left the house just before 6am and was 12th in line to vote at our polling station.. then he came home and crawled back into bed! :-)

I haven't heard of any violence or any unrest in the country at all.

I also know that at about midnight the President and his entire family went to Amahoro Stadium where it was PACKED!!! to celebrate. Serge said that he turned the TV off about 1am and left the First Lady and kids on that football field celebrating by leading everyone in the Electric Slide dance... it's her favourite!

So what you ask, makes me mad??!!!

WELL... let me tell you. Warning.. a 'Jen' Rant comin' on!

So... I check CBC, just to see what my own country is saying about the election here. After some digging I find a 7 sentence story which predicted Kagame's win but also stated, and I quote,
'Analysts said Kagame faced no real competition. Some opposition parties were barred from participating, and the pre-election period was marred by crackdowns on opposition figures and media'.

I then go to BBC. And after some digging I find a little story and a media clip. It's the media clip that makes me MAD! The journalist stated that some parties were not allowed to run due to differing views of Kagame's party and were arrested upon arrival and others were blocked from registering. And that is ALL he says... AH!!!

WHY were they arrested?

Blows my mind how some journalists and others in the west, looking in on Rwanda and Africa can be so arrogant and misleading some times!

So, Kagame is just to allow people who landed in Kigali and in their first news conference at the airport announced that their party had come back to 'finish the job'... implying the genocide????

Seriously people!!!! You would think that this `tidbit`of information would be important somehow. Or does one really not know what genocide is or the causes of it?

So Human Rights and whoever else who most likely knows nothing of what it is to be a genocide survivor or oppressed in whatever way can just say that there was no real opposition and that Rwandan people are oppressed??

Did I say this makes me mad???

The genocide ended 16 years ago because the RPF, lead by Paul Kagame and others came and fought in a land which their parents had fled, felt oppressed in or had never even entered before. The genocide did not end because the west put a stop to it. The west was still tying the hands of the UN mission here and still arguing over what name to call the mission of the soldiers they were releasing to come and help fight against the killers. 

What has happened in this country since the end of the genocide in July 1994 is incredibly remarkable. I don`t think there is another country in the world that has recovered from anything like this in such a short period of time - socially, economically, development in all areas really.

So.. how dare the west, point fingers and tell an African leader or country how they should run it... especially when the cause of the genocide was colonization from the west!


Okay.. I`m done.


Barb Smith said...

Hi Jen, Please do not be "done". I, too, wondered when I read and heard the reports of the election what the truth was. Everytime the media report about it, they include a bit about how Kagame stopped oppostion parties from participating. If it is not true, in the way they are reporting it, maybe the BBC and CBC need to receive a copy of your blog. If we don't yell and scream, like our silence during the genocide, then evil flourishes. Thanks for your passion and your hard work with everyone in Rwanda! Love, Barb Smith (Lana's mom)

Mike Goerz said...

jen, I LOVE this!! I spent hours pretty much yelling at the TV in Brett's appartment yesterday! ...I'm sure everyone who was here was pretty sick of me by the time they turned it off..haha.
Western media needs to understand the new Rwanda before they start judging and claiming un-true and half truths about how things really are there. Obviously at least 92% of Rwandans of voting age think that Kagame is doing right in the country, the west needs to get off their high horses and actually let an African country lead itself for once, now that there is actually a leader who is doing it right!

Keep on preachin' Jen!!

Mike Goerz said...

btw, I posted your rant on my blog, with credit given. I would have had a hard time saying it better, so I went with yours :)

Hollie said...

Yep, we have been ranting too!! What amazes me is you have some of the most corrupt royalty in the Middle East, repressive dictatorships in Africa, and the Western media wants to discredit the Rwandan elections.

We searched our news in Canada today for any mention of the results but there was nothing. Guess there was too much joy and celebration for it to be newsworthy. Yet, leading up to it they were constantly reporting about human rights abuses, free speech, etc. I have loved some of the articles in The New Times Online from Rwandan journalists in response to the Western media. Superb!

Perhaps Steven Harper will allow the 'Neo-Nazi' Party to run in the next election so they can campaign messages of intolerance and hatred across the country?

Anonymous said...

well said! thanks for sharing your unique perspective.

Anonymous said...

I looked at some stuff on CNN and same thing. One interviewer interviewing a woman in some kind of office in Rwanda was, quite frankly, an ass! I couldn't believe how stupid he was...do a little research on Kagame before you make him look like an evil dictator. The truth is these so called "journalists" probably couldn't point Rwanda out on a map. Rant away Jen and hopefully people will listen to you.

kgingeri said...

Go Jen go. Thanks for some truth amongst lies!! I figure that the sooner we all (the western world) realize the media is bias and money hungry only - with rarely, if ever, any truth, and quit looking to if for valid info the better off we'll be. Why is it that we think the news gives us truth when they make the most money when it's a distorted story?! Forget western media! I love hearing first hand like this!

Emily said...

Thank you so much for this. My husband and I are in the process of adopting a baby from Rwanda and have EXTREME respect for President Kagame. Thank you for spreading some truth about the elections. It is very disheartening to read the reports that came about the election, while trying to search for truth. Obviously, with 92% of Rwandans voting President Kagame back into office, he is doing a lot of things right. Thank you!