Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Reuters-President Kagame Wins Election In Rwanda

Rwandan President Paul Kagame: Finbarr O'Reilly/Reuters
(Story reported by Hereward Holland for Reuters News)

(Reuters) - Rwandan President Paul Kagame won 93 percent of the vote in an election that opponents said was marred by repression and violence.

The bush war veteran won 4,638,560 votes from a total of 5,178,492 registered voters in the central African country, the National Electoral Commission (NEC) said.

Kagame, widely lauded for rebuilding Rwanda and establishing peace in the aftermath of the 1994 genocide, won the last election in 2003 by a similar margin.

"We are very happy with the conduct of the electoral process, from the campaign to the voting itself. We did not get reports of intimidation from anywhere," said Charles Munyaneza, executive secretary of the electoral body.

The vote count is provisional pending its signing-off by the Supreme Court. Turnout for Monday's election was more than 95 percent in all the nation's five provinces.

Kagame's nearest rival, Jean Damascene Ntawukuliryayo of the Social Democratic Party, won 5 percent. Prosper Higiro of the Liberal Party garnered just over 1 percent and Alvera Mukabaramba of the Party for Peace and Concord 0.4 percent.

Opponents said the other candidates were a democratic smokescreen and stooges of Kagame's Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF). They also said the campaign playing field had been uneven, with three would-be opposition candidates prevented from registering to contest the ballot.

(click here to read the full story on the Reuters News website)

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