Politics

UPDATE: Day Three of Presidential campaigns

Kagame heads to Nyanza for his second rally of the day

President Paul Kagame is now addressing residents of Nyanza district after a successful campaign in neighboring Ruhango district.

Like, Ruhango district the RPF flag bearer was greeted by jubilating supporters in Nyanza district as they sang and danced to party songs.

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Older citizens were among those waiting for RPF candidate Paul Kagame in Nyanza on Friday. (Photo by Athan Tashobya)

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Presidential campaigns got underway today with particularly thousands turning up for incumbent President Paul Kagame’s rally in Ruhango District.

Kagame is the flag bearer of the RPF-Inkotanyi, the governing party that came to power 23 years ago after liberating the country and ending the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Kagame is also backed by nine other political parties, whose leaders have been seen with Kagame or RPF campaign symbols at the rally in Ruhango.

Tens of thousands thronged the campaign venue in Ruhango town since early morning, with Kagame expected to address the gathering mid-morning before proceeding to Nyanza District for his second rally later in the day.

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Speaker of Parliament and PL party chief Donatille Mukabalisa (3rd left), along with other party officials at Kagame’s rally in Ruhango on Friday

Both Ruhango, Kagame’s birthplace, and Nyanza are in Southern Province.

Hundreds of Kagame’s supporters lined the streets along his path to the country’s south, including in Kigali’s commercial hub of Nyabugogo, waiting for the RPF candidate’s motorcade.

Kagame has arrived at the campaign venue but was yet to speak.

Meanwhile, independent candidate Philippe Mpayimana has arrived in Nyamata town, Bugesera District in Eastern Province where he is set to address his first rally.

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Mpayimana is Nyamata for his first rally on Friday.

Arriving about two hours behind the schedule, Mpayimana was seen by our reporter walking around town encouraging residents to turn up for his rally at Nyamata stadium.

Frank Habineza, the flag bearer and president of Democratic Green Party of Rwanda, headed to Rusizi in Western Province from where he will be launching his campaigns.

He was yet to arrive at the venue.

Meanwhile, as the candidates head to the countryside to kick-start their campaigns, the campaign mood is starting to be visible in the capital Kigali with campaigns putting up party flags, banners and posters around major public places such as roundabouts.

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Musicians entertain RPF-Inkotanyi supporters in Ruhango where Paul Kagame is addressing his first rally of the 2017 presidential elections on Friday (Photo by Athan Tashobya)

RPF and Kagame’s campaign materials are by far the dominant feature.

Businesses are expected to cash in on voters’ enthusiasm with many people expected to spend on campaign T-shirts, hats, among other materials.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

 

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