Ref: The RPP request to impose a travel ban, freezing of personal assets and other punitive measures to President Kagame
Dear fellow Rwandan, well-wishers and friends of Rwanda,
On behalf of my party, the Rwanda People’s Party, we would like to remind you about the continued miseries that have been subjected upon the people of Rwanda since 1959. These range from the notorious and heinous regime of the late Kayibanda, the regime of murder, terror and genocide of late Habyarinama to the current murderous and brutal regime of President Paul Kagame. Although, the tyrannical and genocidal regime was overthrown in 1994, human rights abuses, suffocations of democratic voices, blackmails, segregating, suppressing and killing of its own people by the RPF regime remain the narrative in progress.
In our efforts to secure meaningful and desirable changes needed for the people of Rwanda, my party the Rwanda People’s Party sent a proposal for peace talks directly to President on the 5th of May 2011. It is now six months since President Kagame personally received the RPP proposal for peace talks. We believe President Kagame is neither in support of peace nor the interests of the people of Rwanda, instead he is clinging onto power for his own self-serving and self-seeking interests of himself, his associates and business executives whose vicious characters continue to vandalise and exploit the Rwandan people. Today, we wish to inform you that we received very chilling information from reliable sources close to President Kagame that he is prepared to take Gadhafi’s route, and happily overseeing his country sinking back into the hell of 1994, rather than participating in peace talks with his fellow Rwandans to achieve the desired peaceful changes for the benefit of all Rwandan.
The probability of a new civil war breaking out in Rwanda becomes more real day- by-day. We believe that a regional “earthquake” is inevitable, should the international community insist on interventionism rather than preventive mechanism. Unless our Road Map to Peace is adopted, it is likely that my party and other opposition parties may get drawn into such a civil war against our wishes and collective wisdom. It is therefore imperative that the international community act now to induce peace rather than act post facto after the genocide has already taken place as they did in 1994. The most effective way to do this is by encouraging genuine reconciliation so that all Rwandan political parties can sit at a round-table and agree to a minimum programme for rebuilding our country, averting civil war, facilitating the return of the refugees and repairing our relations with our neighbours. Regrettably, these peaceful proposals have been overruled by President Kagame.
We offer this Road Map, in part to thwart often false and exaggerated claims in the western press about Rwanda’s recovery and of very impressive development. These reports are false and fail to come to grips with the reality that Rwanda is a very unsafe and destitute country and marred by corruption. Rwanda is a country in which people live in daily fear where murder, disappearances and abductions are routine. The economic recovery so lauded by the western press has not delivered any prosperity to the ordinary Rwandan as poverty is very much entrenched and endemic. The reports failed to disclose that the Rwandan economy suffers from, such as short comings in its structure and noticeable failure in its ability to play its role, is as result of the absence of correct economic direction and lack of realistic economic policies. This is also due to the use of the state and society as a laboratory for testing economic opinions and theories as well as delegating the management of the economy – vital as it is – to an incapable and unqualified and corrupt administration. They failed to note thousands of children still live in substandard camps in the most abject conditions, shut away from the prying eyes of foreigners. These are among 1.7 million orphans, children born through rape during and after the genocide, and street children displaced by the 1994 genocide. These children have no future, no hope, no dreams and no aspirations. In addition, these reports ignored the state policy for demolition of people’s houses and forced sterilizations of Rwandan poor. The aim of this cruel policy is to reduce poverty by lowering the birth rate among the poor that are currently accounted for nine in ten of Rwandan population. This is a premeditated policy because it is done fundamentally in areas of extreme poverty, rural and barely educated.
Indeed, if the International community had acted in a timely manner, the 1994 genocide would not have taken place. In 1986, many political parties at the time, including mine the Rwanda National Liberation Movement (RNLM), offered to enter into direct dialogue with the Habyarimana regime, supported by the then government of Mobutu Sese Seko in the then Zaire, but this never came to fruition. Today, Rwanda is famously known for the horrific memories of the 1994 tragedy, when the international community abandoned one million of the innocent, the defenceless and the downtrodden Rwandans to be slaughtered in genocide. We do believe that there is enough time to reflect back and allow the interests of the Rwandan people to prevail. This is why we must now redouble our efforts by endorsing our Road Map to Peace, which we believe can avert a bloodbath in our country, the effects of which would reverberate across the Great Lakes Region of Nations.
Rwanda does not deserve what it has gone through in its history. We need peace and prosperity. We need a society where our people, our women and especially our children are free and safe. That is the simple demands of our party RPP. A very simple demand yet is a “supreme act of democracy and patriotism” for the people of Rwanda to make their own decisions and informed choices. We are just asking for our basic human rights, which are rights that we should have under international law and a right for all people in the world. Surprisingly, President Kagame has failed to subscribe to these peaceful proposals, and has described the Rwandan request for their rights, freedoms and dignity as deceptive and disgraceful.
To this extent, my party therefore, the Rwanda People’s Party, calls upon the international community (UN, EU, AU, the Commonwealth, Arab League, ASEAN, EAC, and individual governments and institutions) to impose an arms embargo, a travel ban, freezing of personal assets and other punitive measures to President Kagame including, 57 key military security chiefs; the overall military commander, head of air force, ground force, head of reserve force, director of central intelligence and their subordinates ,national security minister, defence, justices, local administration, commissioner of prison, central bank, presidential advisors, presidential spokesman and government spokesman. (A list of which has been communicated directly to the international community). The party also demands for the imposition of travel visa ban to members of their families and associates and to prevent their children and next of kin to visit or study abroad.
These punitive measures are necessary to reflect the will and determination of the international community in sending a staunch warning to the RPF regime, that restoration and protection of human rights, freedoms and dignity of the people Rwanda is paramount and can never be substituted by other means. Meaning that, the measures need to be put in place are solely aimed at facilitating a peaceful resolution to Rwanda’s political crisis, discourage and stop the continued political violence in this tiny toned country. Unabated political turmoil in Rwanda has taken on uncontrollable dimensions and is threating the cohesions of the people of the entirely Great Lakes Region of Nations. It’s has become a political schizophrenia that requires an immediate attention. There is urgent need therefore, for a cross-party government to be formed followed by early elections to safeguard regional stability.
The RPP believes that having a peaceful situation on the table will serve as a useful deterrent to prevent future human catastrophe in Rwanda. It is therefore necessary for the international community to respond swiftly and restrain President Kagame in a way that encourages and supports national reconciliation, inducing peace among others and moves forward towards resolving the legitimate crisis without negatively impacting the people of Rwanda who are suffering a great deal in the hands of the RPF regime. We believe that, it is only the arms embargo, travel ban, freezing of assets to President Kagame and his associates that could help to bring them down to their knees. As a party, we believe that the handling of the 1994 Rwanda genocide was a tsunami and complete failure of negligence on the side of the international community and shouldn’t be allowed to be repeated.
We do not want Mr. Kagame to be overthrown in a military coup or go back to the era of civil war because we do not believe these are a solution to Africa’s problems. What we want in Rwanda and in Africa are free and fair elections. We want democracy in Africa and we appeal to international community to help us achieve this objective by peaceful means. The path President Paul Kagame has chosen is only going to fuel further violence in Rwanda and ignite possible new genocide in a few years time if not tomorrow. Rwanda has had infamous memorable fearsome, tearful, frightening, gruesome and grief-stricken memories of ethnic cleansing, massacres, wars and genocides for the past 53 years. Therefore, no one, is in a better position to know what wars and conflicts mean to Rwanda as nation and a people than the people of Rwanda themselves. We also believe that no member of the international community would want to see innocent Rwandan children slaughtered again and millions forced to flee into neighbouring countries to live a life of squalor and desperation. This is why the RPP demands for the international community to swiftly take action now, to save lives of the people of Rwanda.
We are therefore, appealing for help for the Rwandan people to stop the possibility of a new civil war by ending uncritical support to a brutal dictatorship whose violent behaviours are getting worse day-by-day. We request the international community to look at Rwanda as a state with rights guaranteed under international law. Rwanda as a state and a people will still be there when Kagame is gone. We are committed to a strategic partnership with the international community and to hold fraternal bilateral relations with all governments and peoples even when Mr. Paul Kagame is gone from the Rwandan body-politic.
We are appealing to the international community to give a cast-iron guarantee to end their complicity in the continued bulldozing of the innocent, the defenceless and the downtrodden ones by the RPF regime. The people of Rwanda want to avoid the “looks like another attempt to tackle the symptoms when the underlying problems remained unresolved.”
As a party, we also call upon all friends of Rwanda to revisit their position so as to become a party to this historical global partnership with the rest of the humanity to give voice to the voiceless Rwandans.
Thanks and God bless you all,
John V Karuranga
Rwanda People’s Party
Facebook: John V Karuranga
Dated: Helsingborg, 30/10/2011