"Africa is, indeed, coming into fashion." - Horace Walpole (1774)


risk & Rwanda

A very helpful political risk analysis for Rwanda from Reuters' Hereward Holland:
Foreign diplomats and sources close to the government say deepening rifts within the ruling Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) risk undermining the the nation's stability.

Regional analysts say parts of the banking, tea plantation, coffee, tobacco and mineral exporting businesses are now in the hands of people close to Kagame and the RPF elite.

Political analysts say the divisions are partly connected to the privatisation of government and party assets into the hands of President Paul Kagame and his inner circle.

The Rwanda Development Board denied any government assets had been sold off to the RPF elite.

Meanwhile, Kagame's war on graft has seen former political associates locked up.

The arrest of two senior army officials in April, following a dramatic reshuffle of the military hierarchy, underscored the tensions and erosion of trust at the top. Analysts say the generals' detention -- one for abuse of office, the other for immoral conduct -- is part of a crackdown on critics of Kagame's centralisation of party financing and political power.
Note that Reuters is one of the (or is it the?) only Western media agencies to have a reporter based in Kigali. I'm in full agreement that the increasing centralization of power and resources in the RPF is a key motivating factor in the party's internal divides. In addition, as Holland notes, the status of Laurent Nkunda is another important issue over which RPF elites disagree. Few in the RPF want to see Nkunda take the stand at a trial in the DRC or at the ICC.


Blogger Our Man in Africa said...

The BBC have several reporters in the city. AP used to have a local stringer though not sure what he's doing nowadays. I'd be very surprised if AFP don't have someone.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010 4:36:00 AM

Blogger kigaliwire said...

AFP have a local stringer.

BBC World Service have a small office, not a bureau, with French/English and Kinyarwanda output.

VOA and Deutshce Welle are also present.

But Hez is pretty much it as far as permanently based foreigners serving a western media outlet is concerned.

Not quite what your big mate Michael Fairbanks implied in HuffPost recently...


Wednesday, June 02, 2010 5:31:00 AM


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