Special to the NNPA from the GIN
(GIN) – Rwandan President Paul Kagame took his turn on the red carpet in New York City this week and received a standing ovation for his role in “Earth Made of Glass” – a new documentary that indicts France as “having a hand in all this mess,” referring to the genocide.
While gathering up the accolades, including a flattering editorial in the Wall Street Journal, his government is in the throes of a political crisis. Two top military officers were dismissed and the opposition and independent media faced arrest or exile.
Victoire Ingabire, a presidential aspirant, was arrested over comments she made at a genocide memorial in which she said Hutu victims of the genocide must also not be forgotten.
Opposition figures say they believe Kagame is preying on fears of another genocide to crush the opposition. He won 95 per cent of the vote in 2003 elections that were seen as flawed. They point to the “genocide ideology” law that is meant to keep people from fanning ethnic hatred but which critics say has been used to stifle dissent.
Finally, two local newspapers were banned for allegedly insulting Kagame, inciting the police and army to insubordination and creating fear among the public, according to the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists.
The watchdog group called the move a “thinly disguised attempt at censorship.”
NNPA, the National Newspaper Publishers Association, serves nearly 200 Black newspapers. Read more stories from the Black press at www.BlackPressUSA.com. GIN, the Global Information Network, a not-for-profit news and world media operation, is the largest distributor of Developing World news services, including the award-winning Inter Press Service, in the U.S. Visit www.globalinfo.org and http://gin-ips.blogspot.com/.