The former presidential aspirant, who was unknown in Rwandan
politics until last year’s presidential election, has drawn
attention of some overseas media since her announcement of the
intention of running for the presidency.
minister Richard Sezibera said earlier this month in a tweet
that Rwigara is not facing jail for "speaking up", but for
activities "deemed criminal under Rwandan laws."
Later, Rwandan president Paul Kagame told media on the
sidelines of the Paris Peace Forum that the justice of Rwanda
Rwanda has political pluralism with several political parties
being represented in the parliament, and it has developed an
equal political system to include women in decision making in
its political system, said Ismael Buchanan, Dean of the School
of Economics and Governance at the University of Rwanda.
Anyone can make a political statement in Rwanda as long as he
or she abides by the law, Buchanan told Xinhua.
"Today’s Rwanda is characterized by equality and the rule of
law," he said, noting that the country has reconciled its
population and built unity, and continues to register progress
in every aspect.
Rwanda’s political environment is stable and has played a
central role in the economic transformation of the country, he
There is positive development in Rwanda’s political
environment, as a number of opposition political parties like
the Social Democratic Party and the Democratic Green Party of
Rwanda have representatives in the parliament, said Christopher
Kayumba, senior lecturer of School of Journalism and
Communication at the University of Rwanda.
Kayumba added that many legislators in the parliament are
Rwanda is a stable country with a stable political
environment, which is why the country is attracting huge foreign
investments that has accelerated its economic growth, Kayumba
For Frederick Golooba-Mutebi, researcher and writer on
politics and public affairs, the country’s political environment
is of "a very particular kind."
The researcher added that it is "a guided and
consensus-driven democracy" that is governed by rules and
conventions agreed by various political forces after the
liberation struggle in 1990s and the 1994 Genocide against the
Although the consensus allows for various freedom, there are
also limits of these freedom for reasons related the
government’s determination to maintain peace, promote unity and
cohesion, while also for preventing the re-emergence of
divisions and contestation that past instability, war and
ultimately the genocide are attributed, he said.
The 1994’s genocide claimed about 1 million lives, mostly
Scholars also talked about tendencies that some media reports
on the case have shown.
Reporting of the Rwigara’s case and others involving
politicians or political activists is prone to simplification,
whereby media reduce the matters involved to "political
persecution," said Golooba-Mutebi.
Politicians or political activists may be accused of
prosecutable offences that have nothing directly to do with
politics, but instantly their trials are portrayed as
politically motivated because of their association with opposing
or criticizing the government, he said, adding that this applies
to the case of Rwigara.
The public is misinformed by some media reports on the case,
said Gatete Nyiringabo Ruhumuliza, a research fellow of
The political environment in the country is stable, but some
media prefer not to focus on actual development policies of the
country, he said.