Rwandan President Paul Kagame was inaugurated Friday for a third term after emerging as a complete winner with about 99 percent of vote in the recent presidential election. The ceremony was attended by several African leaders in the Rwandan capital city Kigali.
In his election campaign the longtime president had said the presidential election is just a formality and he would lead the next term too. Rwanda virtually has no political opposition as of now, but critics have been raising voice accusing the president of being intolerant of dissent. However, Kagame has denied the claims.
While being inaugurated the president said it is a day of gratitude and he will continue to work for the citizens with honor and pride.
Kagame added the continent is progressing in right path and Rwandans will be doing just the fine.
Since the end of genocide in 1994 Kagame has been the president, or to say he is the de facto leader. In 2015 there was a change made in the constitution and it says Kagame can stay legally in power until 2034.
According to Human Rights Watch, a pattern of arrests, detentions and harassment of opposition party leaders as well as supporters were seen couple of months before the election. The police even detained journalists and activists in some cases.
The group’s Ida Swayer said there has been cases where people were forcibly disappeared or prosecuted for making critical comments on the ruling party.
Swayer added, “Kagame’s landslide win came as no surprise in a context in which Rwandans who have dared raise their voices or challenge the status quo have been arrested, forcibly disappeared or killed.”