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The Tragedy of "Kagamenisation" of Rwanda

The problem with Rwanda may not be Kagame Paul actually but millions of Rwandans who have been so ‘Kagamenised’ that they (i) are incapable of making an opinion of their country’s political situation and process and (ii) cannot tolerate criticism of Kagame and his government. If you criticize Kagame, these people meet you with very personalized and vicious attacks and as usual easily dismiss you as somebody who does not either know or care about Rwanda's history and so on. Kagame has slowly turned Rwanda into an Israel of Africa; a country whose leadership and political choices must never be questioned because the historical tragedy of a genocide (like the Holocaust) is used to foreclose open debate on and about Rwanda and its leadership. Kagame has over the years successfully mystified himself and millions of Rwandans have actually now officially deified him such that they are not only unable to see anything wrong about Kagame but also unable to conceive Rwanda without and beyond a Kagame. That is how Kagame is setting up Rwanda for a big future trouble. Those who know Meles Zenawi and his philosophy of renaissance in Ethiopia also probably know that the current political turmoil in Ethiopia is partly a result of years of Zenawi’s iron rule projected as a developmental state. Zenawi mystified himself and led the people of Ethiopia into deifying him. When he died he left a power vacuum that Ethiopia is yet to figure out how to fill. The same can be predicted of Rwanda since there are a number of parallels. Kagame may be thinking he will leave Rwanda in the hands of his anointed successor (as things stand this looks like one of his offspring) but it may not work smoothly as he seems to calculate. For the people who tell us that Rwanda is developing (whatever that means) and that Kagame is doing miracles in Rwanda etc hence we should leave Rwanda and Kagame alone unless we want to footnote the two as examples of what progress in Africa should look like etc, I should also remind them that people have a known history of eating material progress at certain points. Hence, material development without what I love calling development of the people often does go up in smoke when the people finally wake up and realize that actually softer things like their freedoms, and dignified citizenship, and human rights do matter more that material development such as roads and clean cities and actually start demanding for those things as opposed to being passive victims of governmentality.

The Tragedy of "Kagamenisation" of Rwanda The Tragedy of "Kagamenisation" of Rwanda Reviewed by Ibrahim Magara on June 26, 2019 Rating: 5

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