Political Context of Rwanda

Independence in 1962
In 1962, Rwanda gained their independence from Belgium. The Europeans left the country in a state of discord due to the majority of Hutus who were able to gain back their power from the Tutsis, who were viewed as feudal overlords. The Party of the Hutu Emancipation Movement (PARMEHUTU) came into power. The once oppressed Hutus decided to take revenge and many Tutsis were killed. 200,000 Tutsi refugees fled to neighbouring country to escape the violence that was taking place in their country

He was elected as the first president under the constitution adopted in 1962 and was re-elected in 1965 and 1969. In 1964 following an incursion from Burundi which continued to be controlled by its Tutsi aristocracy and many Tutsis were killed in Rwanda and numerous others left the country.

Leadership and Political Officials
With its long history of royal rule and social status divisions, Rwanda has strong hierarchical political traditions. Relations with politicians like other social relations are highly regulated by status roles.

Paul Kagame
Since 2000, the Rwandan government has been headed by President Paul Kagame. His party the Rwandan Patriotic Front grew out of the armed group that invaded Rwanda from Uganda in 1990 and eventually put a stop to the 1994 genocide. President Kagame was re-elected with an overwhelming majority that made him stay in power up-to-date.

Constitution of Rwanda
Between 1994 and 2003 Rwanda was governed by a set of documents combining President Habyarimana’s 1991 Constitution, the Arusha Accords, and some additional protocols introduced by the transitional government. The current Constitution which was released in 2003 and it is relevant to Rwanda’s specific needs and reflected the views of the entire population. The draft constitution which was released in 2003, it was approved by the Parliament and was then put to a referendum in May of that year.

Challenges in Rwanda

  • Rwanda a country located in Central Africa has had the most brutal genocide ever done in Africa. Many problems in Rwanda have risen because of the massive slaughter.
  • Rwanda has faced problems of rehabilitation
  • Rwanda is under heavy international criticism for its alleged support to the M23 rebels in Congo.
  • Rwanda lacks adequate health care and schools and the country’s overwhelmingly rural settlement pattern makes delivery of improved social services difficult and expensive

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