It is sort of welcoming that President Paul Kagame has released 2000 political prisoners. However, there is no reason to really celebrate it. Not like Kagame is reforming his ways or trying to open up for multi-party democracy, even as there is one Opposition MP in the Parliament after the recent election. Not like that person’s voice will cause a revolution.
We should know that the freedom of Victorie Ingabire Umuhoza, the opposition leader and President of FDU-Inkingi, which was arrested and detained on terrorism charges, because she challenged Kagame before the August 2010 Presidential Elections. She was later arrested in October 2010, since then she was detained on the charges explained below.
“The Applicant avers that on 10 February, 2010, she received a summons requiring her to appear before a judicial police officer at the Criminal Investigation Department (ClD). According to her, she was accused of committing the offence of aiding and abetting terrorism, punishable under Article 12 of Law No. 45/2009 of 9 September, 2008, on the punishment of the offence of terrorism. She states that the allegations were “exclusively based on contacts she is said to have had with some defectors of the Forces Ddmocratiques de Liberation du Rwanda (FDLR), with a view to establishing an armed branch of the political party called Forces Democratiques Unifiees, of which she is President”. She further submits that she was also charged with “spreading the ideology of genooide, sectarianism and divisionism” (African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights – ‘In the matter of Ingabire Victorie Umuhoza V. Republic of Rwanda – Judgment’ (24.11.2017).
Even if Ingabire Umuhoza now is released and allowed to do political work for FDU-Inkingi, the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) still owns the Republic and Kagame is not limiting his powers. He still controls it all and everyone else, he does this for brownie points and making him look better. Even as that is not the reality. If it was so, the torture, the treatment of Ingabire and everything that happen to her while incarcerated. There was even reports of lacking of food and other acts of ill-treatment of her. She is certainly not alone in those acts of impunity against citizens behind bars. That is why, we cannot just celebrate the 2000 liberated political prisoners.
That is because we cannot give this away and give Kagame the props. Because then I am playing in the hands of him and I cannot do that. His able to play around the board of Arsenal, but the rest of us knows Red Cards, when we see them.
She was arrested for eight years on forged charges, that was the rest of them too. If not, why could Kagame suddenly show mercy to them all? If he didn’t know that he was the man behind their demise and the reason for their pain. Kagame knows this and trying to get positive news behind him. Even if they are not saying he is the reason for their demise. Which all of the pardoned prisoners should say, as the political prisoners most of them was.
Ingabire was the biggest one of the pardoned prisoners, there are still plenty of them behind bars. The other one that has challenged Kagame for Presidential Elections was Diane Rwigara, that is currently still behind bars and the state has sold of the properties of the family. While also arrested several of her relatives. So, it is not like the RPF and Kagame have changed, because they are still acting with impunity. That should never be forgotten, it is not like these pardons has changed the reality of what the Kagame regime is. Peace.
We can start to wonder, what does it take to go from an internal audit of tenders and files within the Independent Boundaries and Electoral Commission (IEBC) after the General Election and Fresh Presidential Elections of 2017 to go into a real inquiry and direct investigations into the manners of what really was done during that period?
Because now in 2018, there been internal problems and deflections, as the IEBC has tried to shield themselves and tried to make themselves clean without even during cleaning. They have tried to fix things, without doing anything else, but for appearances sake.
“POLICE ARREST Chiloba PA Abednego Ominde and acting IEBC Finance director Agatha Wahome after attempt to sneak out 14 procurement files” (NationBreakingNews, 13.09.2018).
The suspension of Ezra Chiloba haven’t changed anything, there are Commissioners who has returned as they was even paid while they had quit their offices. Therefore, the whole IEBC seems shady as it is and Wafula Chebukati doesn’t seem to handle it very well. As the trust of the organization is lack-luster already and today’s activity is just a long string of ill-activity from the government organization.
Chiloba must really be shielded by the high-above, Chiloba have to be connected up-high and gotten suction from either the DP or the President. Because Chiloba are suspended, but still pulling strings within the organization. The Internal Audit which is continuing, are not seemingly addressing the manners of 2017 or anything that glaces trust towards the electorate. There are just more mere saga of drama, without any smoking gun.
Chiloba can act all out and play innocent in these manners, but we know there are more to it. As the rigged elections, lack of transparency and lack of electoral reforms are the reasons for the issues that are there today. That Chiloba continued and Chebukati, as well as the rest of team, expect for Roselyn Akombe who has left the scene. The rest have returned and the reality right now is that IEBC can do whatever and get away with it. As the IEBC gave the results the Jubilee needed and now they just need to make a circus so that it seems to changes of guards, but the reality is they are gearing up to do more of the same later. Without anyone looking into the servers, the connections to Cambridge Analytica or the OT Morpho. Everything are just moving like nothing.
Chiloba is just half-stepping and gets away, the IEBC does the same. There is no promise. Chiloba are just acting out and so does the organization. Chebukati doesn’t feel this or acts stressed. They are just playing the public without any smoke or fire. It is just acting out, but no real change. That should worry Kenyans, but they have more dire needs with more cost of life, more taxes and a broke state with growing debts. Peace.
Again, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) are in the headlines, and not for the right reasons. They are posting a possible review of the 2017 Elections. However, that they will have any consequence that makes sense. Is most likely not, as the IEBC delivered what the Jubilee Party needed. This being the result that President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto needed to continue in power. They got that and was able to settle it and ensure they still could eat. Even if the rigging was blatant and the obvious mismanagement from the IEBC.
Therefore, there been many Commissioners and leadership role of the IEBC whose left their offices. As they we’re questioning the leadership of CEO Ezra Chiloba or Chairman Wafula Chebukati. Both of them has acted questionably during the Fresh Presidential Elections and also in the first round too. Which was for various reasons even annulled by the Supreme Court and Court Justice David Maraga.
That is why today is surprising:
“Connie Maina and Margaret Mwachanya, who announced their resignation from the electoral commission earlier this year, returned to their offices at Anniversary Towers in Nairobi on Friday” (…) ““They’ve been holed up in their respective offices since they arrived,” said the source. In April, IEBC vice chairperson Connie Maina and commissioners Margaret Mwachanya and Paul Kurgat said they had left the commission because they had no faith in the chairman’s leadership. Earlier this month, the High Court declared the resignation of the IEBC commissioners null and void” (Walter Menya – ‘Two commissioners return to IEBC offices’ 24.08.2018 link: https://www.nation.co.ke/news/Connie-Maina-Margaret-Mwachanya-at-IEBC/1056-4727216-x2d7v7/index.html).
Instead of opening the gates for the Commissioners whose done their duty to rig the elections. That are the ones who had no trouble to misuse the power, to fake results and fix tenders that made sense for Jubilee. That these are coming back are not building trust for the Electoral Commission, but instead making you think, that they are gearing up for another round.
The IEBC is already lacking trust within society as a whole. That is not just Chebukati, neither Chiloba. The IEBC was already questionable before the new leadership, as Ahmed Issack Hassan didn’t deliver anything better. All of the ones who is there is still the same con-men as in the past. Instead of reviving it, they are boasting it with the same-old, same-old.
The IEBC should be destroyed completely, the leadership should all resign and leave this job. Work somewhere else. As the trust in the whole unit is lacking. The Jubilee and the whole Parliament should try to revise the organization and even change the narrative. Because the ones that are there right now, are just conducting affairs like they are preparing to the next rigged affair.
Therefore, letting the same folks run it like they did in 2017. The review isn’t believable, as it isn’t an outside entity looking into the IEBC. But it is themselves investigating themselves. If they will find something, it will not change anything.
I doubt that the ones investigating internally want to bite of the hands that feeds themselves. That doesn’t make sense.
That is why the entering of these commissioners aren’t make change. Neither, prolonged suspension of Chiloba. Since the last lackeys of Jubilee is still lingering. So, they are just preparing for 2022 anyway. Peace.