Rwandan Patriotic Front

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Flag of the Rwandan Patriotic Front

The Rwandan Patriotic Front is the ruling political party in Rwanda. The leader is President Paul Kagame. It has governed the country since its armed wing defeated government forces, winning the Rwandan Civil War in 1994.

It has been called authoritarian. Elections are not fair. Opposition parties have been banned. People who criticise them have been arrested or assassinated. There has been electoral fraud.[1]

The party was started by Tutsi refugee intelligentsia in Uganda in 1979. It was called Rwandese Alliance for National Unity. In December 1987, it held its seventh congress in Kampala and changed its name. In 1990 they invaded Rwanda, starting the Rwandan Civil War. in 1994, it formed a government of national unity headed by a Hutu president, Pasteur Bizimungu. [2] In February 1998 Kagame was elected president of the RPF, replacing Alexis Kanyarengwe, and in March 2000 he became the national president. Following a constitutional referendum in 2003, Kagame was elected president with 95% of the vote. The RPF formed a coalition with several smaller parties, which got 74% of the vote in the 2003 parliamentary elections, winning 40 of the 53 elected seats in the Chamber of Deputies. The coalition won 42 seats in the 2008 parliamentary elections, and Kagame was re-elected as president in 2010 with 93% of the vote. In the 2013 parliamentary elections the RPF-led coalition won 41 seats.

References[change | change source]

  1. Waldorf, Lars (2017). "The Apotheosis of a Warlord: Paul Kagame". In Themnér, Anders (ed.). Warlord Democrats in Africa: Ex-Military Leaders and Electoral Politics (PDF). Bloomsbury Academic / Nordic Africa Institute. ISBN 978-1-78360-248-3.
  2. Asiimwe, Arthur (April 6, 2007). "Rwanda's ex-president freed from prison". Reuters. Retrieved April 29, 2021. An ethnic Hutu, he [Bizimungu] was appointed president when the ruling Tutsi-dominated Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) took power after the 1994 genocide, in which extremists from the Hutu majority butchered 800,000 Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus. President Paul Kagame, whose Tutsi-led Rwandan Patriotic Army ended the hundred days of slaughter, was then vice-president, but in reality had more power than his superior.