Introducing RNC Ihuriro…

Rwanda has previously experienced positive developments in its many centuries of existence. That we – Hutu, Tutsi, and Twa alike – are all Rwandans is undeniable. We celebrate with pride what and who we are, our collective contribution to what has been positive in our society and our common heritage as Rwandans. Yet during the last 50 years, Rwandans have instigated and repeated tragedies of unimaginable proportions, including the crime of genocide. Rwandans have inflicted, and still inflict, immense destruction, death and suffering on their fellow Rwandans, often with the government and its institutions as the shameless and callous organizer and cheerleaders of barbarous acts.

Beneath the thousand hills of Rwanda and the jungles of neighboring countries are the vast seas of blood, tears, fear and shame that now characterize us as a people. The current government of Rwanda has failed to learn from the obvious lessons of these appalling experiences. It has failed to marshal the energies and vast potential of all 23 Rwandans – regardless of ethnic origin, religion, language, or other differences – to build a solid foundation for a shared secure, peaceful, prosperous, progressive and united Rwanda.

We must not remain the Rwanda that is perpetually quarrelsome, self-destructive, and incapable of embracing freedom and democracy as pillars of a peaceful and stable society. Rwandans must reject tyranny and repression because these breed disaffection, mistrust, and conflict. Rwandans must resist abuses of their fundamental human rights exacted by today‟s regime because such abuses are not only inhuman, but also because they embody the seeds of tomorrow‟s tragedies. The RPF under President Kagame has failed to create the circumstances necessary to give the people of Rwanda a break from the cycle of violence and hope for a secure future. Rwandans cannot endure any longer the current state of crisis, the fundamental source of which is the denial of the people‟s inherent right to freedom and security.

The failure of the current government to recognize and accept the legitimacy of the people‟s claim to freedom is not only a constraint to social and economic development; it is also a driver of violent conflict. Rwanda must undergo profound political change if it is to avoid violent conflict and immense human suffering in years to come. The Rwanda National Congress is committed to mobilizing the whole of Rwandan society to empower citizens to work together peacefully to replace the current repressive regime with a democratic, multi-ethnic nation.

The Rwanda National Congress reminds all present and future generations of Rwandans that Rwanda is much more important than, and must transcend, any single person, any single dictator, any single ethnic group, any single region, or any single organization or political party. Rwanda is an enduring and beautiful nation with a resilient people, each one of whom is endowed with inalienable rights as a human being and citizen of the nation. Rwanda is our only home, one in which we and posterity are entitled to live in peace and harmony. We can only survive and thrive as a nation if we work together to ensure prosperity, justice and peace for all its inhabitants.

The renewal of our nation will require a new approach to governance and the management of conflict. The new Rwanda that we seek to build must be grounded in freedom as its foundation. The strategies that we shall apply to resolve the crisis that Rwanda faces must be anchored in values, and must aim to address the root causes of conflict in our society and to restore dignity to all our people.

It is the mission and core goal of the Rwanda National Congress to mobilise all Rwandans to participate in building a future based on freedom, unity, peace, equality, democracy and prosperity for all.

On the Need for Profound Political Reform in Rwanda...