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Cameroon’s Election Delay Sparks Accusations of Power Grab by President Biya

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Cameroon’s opposition claims President Paul Biya’s move to delay parliamentary elections is a ploy to cling to power. Critics argue the extension is undemocratic, hindering opposition leaders’ chances in upcoming presidential elections.

In a controversial move, Cameroon’s lawmakers, under the ruling Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement (CPDM), passed a law extending their term by one year, sparking accusations from the opposition that President Paul Biya is orchestrating a power grab. Originally elected in 2020 for a five-year term ending in March 2025, the lawmakers’ term will now extend into 2026, thanks to a bill pushed by Biya.

With CPDM controlling 156 out of 180 seats in parliament, the extension was easily approved. Government officials assert that Cameroon’s constitution grants Biya the authority to consult the Constitutional Council and seek parliamentary approval for such extensions when deemed necessary.

Joshua Osih, leader of the opposition Social Democratic Front, vehemently disagrees. He condemned the extension as undemocratic, arguing that the government had ample time to prepare for the 2025 elections. This maneuver, he claims, is a deliberate attempt to entrench Biya’s grip on power.

The opposition and civil society groups believe the extension serves a more sinister purpose: to thwart key opposition figures, such as Maurice Kamto of the Cameroon Renaissance Movement (CRM), from participating in the 2025 presidential elections. Kamto, who maintains that Biya stole the 2018 presidential election from him, leads a party that boycotted the 2020 local and parliamentary elections, protesting against alleged plans to rig the vote in favor of CPDM.

Under Cameroonian law, a presidential candidate must belong to a political party with at least one municipal councilor or parliamentary representative. CRM currently holds neither, having planned to gain such positions in the now-postponed 2025 elections to legitimize Kamto’s candidacy.

Kamto argues that the parliamentary extension and the postponement of local elections are tactics by the 91-year-old Biya to secure lifelong leadership. He warned that his party would not tolerate these manipulations and threatened to disrupt the elections if his rights are infringed, though he did not specify how.

The government maintains that joint local and parliamentary elections will be held in 2026, following the 2025 presidential election. Kamto highlights the difficulty for non-party-endorsed presidential candidates to meet the legal requirement of 300 endorsements from influential figures, many of whom are either intimidated by or aligned with Biya.

Biya, in power since 1982 and the world’s oldest head of state, has not confirmed his candidacy for the 2025 elections. However, last March, CPDM supporters rallied, urging him to run again, arguing that only Biya can maintain peace and development in Cameroon.

Critics, however, accuse Biya of ruling with an iron fist and refusing to relinquish power, suggesting he intends to remain president until his death. If re-elected, Biya would serve until 2032, at which point he would be 98 years old.

The extension of parliamentary terms and the delay of elections have ignited a fierce debate about the future of democracy in Cameroon. As the political tension escalates, the eyes of the nation—and the world—are on President Biya and the opposition, waiting to see how this contentious power struggle will unfold.

Elections

Biden Under Pressure: Democrats Urge President to End Reelection Campaign

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As concerns mount, key Democratic figures push Biden to reconsider his bid for a second term.

The political landscape is heating up as leading Democrats nudge President Joe Biden to reconsider his reelection campaign. With the 2024 election drawing closer, the stakes are higher than ever, and prominent figures within Biden’s own party are expressing growing unease about his chances against former President Donald Trump.

Former President Barack Obama, who served alongside Biden for eight years, has reportedly voiced his concerns to political allies, suggesting that Biden’s chances of winning are narrowing. This sentiment is shared by a significant number of Democratic leaders who fear that a potential loss could jeopardize their hopes of securing either chamber of Congress.

Despite these growing calls, Biden remains steadfast in his decision to run for reelection. At 81, he has shown no public signs of stepping down, although he has been receptive to discussions about his campaign’s struggles. His resolve was evident as he told House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer in private meetings that he plans to win and looks forward to implementing his agenda for working families.

However, whispers of discontent are becoming louder. Representative Adam Schiff, a notable critic of Trump and an ally of former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, recently urged Biden to bow out. Schiff’s statement encapsulates the fears of many within the party: “A second Trump presidency will undermine the very foundation of our democracy, and I have serious concerns about whether the president can defeat Donald Trump in November.”

The concern isn’t limited to political figures. Hollywood heavyweight George Clooney, who hosted a fundraiser for Biden last month, has called for the President to end his campaign. Moreover, key fundraiser Jeffrey Katzenberg has warned Biden that major donors are hesitant to continue their support.

Much of the anxiety stems from Biden’s performance in the recent debate against Trump, where he appeared fatigued and struggled to maintain his train of thought. This faltering performance has fueled doubts about his capability to endure the rigors of another campaign and effectively challenge Trump’s robust and relentless political style.

Despite these concerns, Biden’s deputy campaign manager, Quentin Fulks, has dismissed the notion that Biden might not be on the ticket. He emphasized that the President is committed to accepting the party’s nomination at the national convention in Chicago next month. The Democratic Party is already planning to start delegate voting early to ensure a smooth nomination process, aiming to avoid a contentious battle at the convention.

Should Biden decide to step down, the path forward remains uncertain. Vice President Kamala Harris could become the Democratic standard-bearer, or the party might hold an open convention to choose a new nominee. This scenario, while speculative, underscores the high stakes and volatility of the current political climate.

Polls show Trump with a slight edge over Biden, a margin that is even more pronounced in key battleground states crucial for an electoral victory. This electoral map, where the presidency is decided by state-by-state contests rather than the national popular vote, adds another layer of complexity to the Democrats’ strategic considerations.

In these battleground states, Harris sometimes fares better than Biden in head-to-head matchups against Trump. While not always leading, her slightly stronger polling results add to the argument that a fresh candidate might bolster Democratic chances.

The Democratic Party’s anxiety is palpable. In the 2020 election, Biden won four critical states by a razor-thin margin of about 123,000 votes collectively. These states could easily swing back to Trump in a similar close contest, amplifying the urgency for the Democrats to reassess their strategy.

Despite the mounting pressure, Biden has outlined three scenarios where he might consider stepping down: dire polling results, a serious medical condition, or a divine intervention. His faith, a guiding force in his life, led him to tell ABC News that he would end his campaign if he believed it was God’s will.

As the political drama unfolds, the Democratic Party stands at a crossroads. With Biden’s steadfast resolve and the rising chorus of concern from within, the path to the 2024 election is fraught with uncertainty. The decisions made in the coming weeks will shape the future of the party and potentially the nation, as the race for the White House enters a critical phase.

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Africa

The Internal Threats: A Dire Warning for Somaliland

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The Untold Story of Waddani’s Alleged Treachery and the Looming Peril

Somaliland stands at a crossroads, with the potential to become a dominant force in Africa if it secures international recognition. The nation’s vast oil, gas, and mineral reserves promise a prosperous future, but only if the current administration can navigate the treacherous waters of internal betrayal and external aggression.

In the shadowy corridors of power, a silent war is being waged within Somaliland, threatening to unravel the very fabric of the nation. This urgent intelligence report exposes the nefarious activities of the Waddani party, allegedly conspiring with external enemies to destabilize Somaliland. As the nation teeters on the brink of chaos, President Muse Bihi’s government faces an existential crisis, infiltrated by traitors and undermined by clandestine forces.

Somaliland’s strategic importance has never been more apparent, drawing the attention of global powers such as China, the US, and Russia. However, this spotlight has also illuminated internal vulnerabilities that foreign adversaries are eager to exploit. The enemy within has found allies among Somaliland’s political elite, with the Waddani party at the epicenter of this betrayal.

Secret intelligence reports, now declassified, reveal a web of corruption and propaganda meticulously woven by Waddani operatives over the past seven years. The former Speaker of the Somaliland Parliament, Abdirizak Khalif, emerges as a pivotal figure in this conspiracy. Khalif, with deep-rooted ties to the Daarod clan, has publicly renounced Somaliland, inciting unrest in Lasanod and beyond. His actions echo the violent legacy of the former Somali dictator, Siad Barre, who orchestrated the massacre of half a million Somalilanders.

Khalif’s ascent to the highest echelons of power, allegedly facilitated by the Waddani party, raises unsettling questions about Somaliland’s security apparatus. How did an avowed enemy infiltrate the government so effectively? Why has the administration of President Muse Bihi, despite being aware of these threats, failed to act decisively?

The internal threat is exacerbated by media manipulation funded by Waddani’s dirty money. Journalists, compromised by bribes, disseminate fake news designed to erode public trust and fuel anti-government sentiments. This insidious campaign aims to destabilize Somaliland from within, rendering it vulnerable to external aggressors.

President Muse Bihi’s tenure, marked by relentless battles against both visible and invisible enemies, underscores the complexity of his predicament. How can a leader combat adversaries embedded within his own administration? The answer lies in decisive, unprecedented action. The government must investigate Waddani’s treacherous activities, expose their corruption, and bring them to justice. The Secret Waddani Files, containing damning evidence of bribery and propaganda, must be made public. Only then can the nation begin to heal and fortify itself against future threats.

The shocking reality is that individuals complicit in this betrayal are poised to compete in the upcoming elections. The failure to address Waddani’s actions signifies a dangerous complacency within the government.

Somaliland’s geopolitical significance, underscored by its alliance with Taiwan, has made it a target for Chinese interference. China, eager to undermine President Bihi’s administration, has allegedly invested in Waddani and other opposition figures. Berbera, once a lesser-known port, is now recognized as Somaliland’s diamond, a critical asset coveted by international powers.

The stakes are high, and the time for decisive action is now.

The forthcoming elections on November 13, 2024, present a critical juncture for Somaliland. It is imperative to delay the elections to root out internal enemies and cleanse the government of traitorous elements. A minimum one-year period is required to implement these necessary purges, ensuring the safety and integrity of the nation before any electoral process resumes. The election committee must prioritize the security of Somaliland over procedural timelines.

Intelligence reports have uncovered a chilling plot by Darood elites to incite a civil war in the western regions of Somaliland, echoing the unrest in Lasanod. Anti-Somaliland elements from the Awdal region are allegedly conspiring to ignite conflict, a scheme that, if left unchecked, could plunge the nation into chaos.

The government must act swiftly to neutralize these threats, imprison unelected clan leaders, and counter media disinformation.

The unsettling truth is that some of President Bihi’s trusted Politicians are implicated in this conspiracy. These individuals, driven by personal gain, have been working with foreign adversaries to destabilize Somaliland from within. Many lack the educational background and relevant experience for their positions, raising further questions about their loyalties and competence.

Somaliland stands at a crossroads, with the potential to become a dominant force in Africa if it secures international recognition. The nation’s vast oil, gas, and mineral reserves promise a prosperous future, but only if the current administration can navigate the treacherous waters of internal betrayal and external aggression.

In conclusion, Somaliland faces an urgent and existential threat from within. The Waddani party, driven by corruption and aligned with external enemies, poses a significant danger to the nation’s sovereignty. President Muse Bihi’s administration must act decisively to purge these internal threats, delay the elections, and secure Somaliland’s future. The time for complacency is over; the survival of Somaliland hangs in the balance.

This is an updated version of an article originally published March 14, 2023.

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Elections

Trump’s VP Pick J.D. Vance: Pro-Israel, Anti-China, and a Source of Anxiety in Europe

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Senator J.D. Vance’s Stance on National Security and Foreign Policy Sparks Debate and Concerns Among Allies

Senator J.D. Vance, former President Donald Trump’s newly announced running mate, took center stage with the keynote speech at the Republican National Convention Wednesday night, focusing on the day’s national security and foreign policy theme “Make America Strong Again.”

Heaping praise on Trump, Vance officially accepted his party’s nomination to be their vice-presidential candidate.

“President Trump represents America’s last best hope to restore what, if lost, may never be found again,” he said. “A country where a working-class boy born far from the halls of power can stand on this stage as the next vice president of the United States of America.”

In his speech, Vance spoke extensively about the threat of China but made no mention of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the war in Gaza. However, in a nod to the so-called Reaganite Republicans who support American interventionism and whose views on Ukraine clash with his own, he appealed for “a party that is unafraid to debate ideas.”

The 39-year-old former venture capitalist has less than two years in public office and little foreign policy background. His recent comments mostly align with Trump’s America First doctrine and have revealed a worldview that can be summed up as pro-Israel, anti-China, and causing anxiety in Europe.

A former U.S. Marine who was deployed in Iraq, Vance is skeptical of American military intervention overseas and, with the exception of Israel, largely opposes foreign aid. He has argued that the United States can’t simultaneously support Ukraine and the Middle East and be ready for contingencies in East Asia.

“It just doesn’t make any sense,” he said in February at the Munich Security Conference. “The math doesn’t work out in terms of weapons manufacturing.”

However, Vance is not an isolationist, as some have described him, said Emma Ashford, senior fellow with the Reimagining U.S. Grand Strategy program at the Stimson Center. In a recent speech at the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, Vance defined his foreign policy goals.

“We want the Israelis and the Sunnis to police their own region of the world. We want the Europeans to police their own region of the world, and we want to be able to focus more on East Asia,” he said.

“You could call him either a realist or perhaps a prioritizer,” Ashford told VOA.

That’s a strong contrast from Biden administration policymakers “who argue that every region is interconnected, and the U.S. has to lead in all of them,” she added. “And it’s definitely a break from the post-Cold War foreign policy in the U.S.”

Yet, Vance’s aim for the United States to pull away from Europe and the Middle East to focus on China is neither new nor uniquely Republican. In fact, former President Barack Obama pursued a Pivot to Asia doctrine from 2009 to 2017.

That pivot has yet to happen, as the U.S. has become bogged down by conflicts in both Europe and the Middle East.

Less Support for Ukraine

In terms of priorities, Vance is aligned with Trump’s insistence that Washington reduce support for Ukraine and force Europeans to play a bigger role in the continent’s own security.

“I do not think that Vladimir Putin is an existential threat to Europe,” Vance said in Munich, sending shock waves through European diplomatic circles. He added that Kyiv should pursue a “negotiated peace” with Moscow even if that means ceding territory.

That prompted criticism from John Herbst, a former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine who is now senior director of the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center. Vance is “completely naive on Putin’s Russia,” Herbst told VOA.

With Trump suggesting he would not protect countries that failed to meet NATO’s defense spending targets, even appearing to encourage Putin to attack them, and Vance’s criticisms of Ukraine, the prospect of a Trump-Vance administration has sparked alarm across Europe.

However, Herbst remains optimistic.

While Ukraine may not be Trump’s first priority, he “perceives himself as a strongman and does not want to be associated with foreign policy failure,” he said. “And a Russian victory in Ukraine if Trump is president would look very much like a foreign policy failure.”

More Support for Israel

While Vance has established himself as a key surrogate for America First, Israel may be the exception. Citing his Christian beliefs, Vance is an even more staunch supporter of Israel than President Joe Biden, pushing for continued military aid and opposing limits on Israel’s war conduct. “Vance’s strong support for Israel is a reflection of the importance of some conservative evangelical views in today’s Republican Party, as well as the stands of white Christian nationalist thinking that has grown under Trump’s grip on the party,” said Brian Katulis, a senior fellow at the Middle East Institute.

Vance has criticized the U.S. neoconservative approach that began with the Bush administration as “strategically and morally stupid.” However, while he is against American interventionism elsewhere, in the Middle East he has advocated for a similar strategy of spending U.S. military resources to shore up an alliance of Israel and Sunni Muslim states to deter Iran and maintain peace and stability in the region.

Katulis critiqued the Republican vice-presidential nominee’s worldview as “a reflection of the confused hyperpartisan debate” from isolationist camps that emerged in the U.S. following the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, rather than an “actual coherent worldview about what it would take to protect America’s interest and values in the real world.”

Meanwhile, Katulis said that Middle East actors are “anticipating more unpredictability, incoherence and confusion” should a Trump-Vance ticket win in November.

Hawkish on China

Author of the best-selling memoir-turned-movie Hillbilly Elegy, Vance has lived with the social and economic harm that deindustrialization has inflicted upon some parts of America.

In his RNC speech Wednesday, Vance pinned the blame on Biden.

“Our country was flooded with cheap Chinese goods, with cheap foreign labor. And in the decades to come, deadly Chinese fentanyl,” he said. “Joe Biden screwed up, and my community paid the price.”

He echoed Trump’s accusation that China is stealing manufacturing jobs from the U.S., especially those jobs in the Midwestern part of the country from which he hails.

“We will protect the wages of American workers and stop the Chinese Communist Party from building their middle class on the backs of American citizens,” he said.

Vance has “supported more economic restrictions and tariffs on Chinese imports and investments,” said Dean Chen, a professor of political science at the Ramapo College of New Jersey. “I expect his position on China to be in line with Trump nationalists in their potential new administration,” he told VOA.

In the U.S. Senate, Vance introduced legislation to restrict Chinese access to U.S. financial markets and to protect American higher education from Beijing’s influence.

On Taiwan, “the thing that we need to prevent more than anything is a Chinese invasion,” Vance said last year during an event at the Heritage Foundation.

“It would be catastrophic for this country. It would decimate our entire economy. It would throw this country into a Great Depression,” he added.

That’s a much more clear-cut stance than Trump, who has suggested at various times that he may not come to Taipei’s defense should Beijing invade. Washington does not have a formal treaty with Taiwan but supplies the democratically self-governing island with arms to maintain a “sufficient self-defense capability.”

In a June interview with Bloomberg Businessweek, Trump indicated he wants Taipei to pay the U.S. for its defense.

“You know, we’re no different than an insurance company,” he said. “Taiwan doesn’t give us anything.”

Taiwan policy aside, Ashford said the biggest shock in a Trump-Vance administration could be on trade policy, with “new tariffs on China or even Europe.”

“It could be quite extreme,” she warned.

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Elections

Biden’s Dramatic Return to the Campaign Trail: A Nation on Edge

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Amidst Escalating Political Violence, Biden Seeks Unity and Support from Key Voting Blocs

In a political landscape as charged as ever, President Joe Biden is stepping back onto the campaign stage, captivating the nation’s attention. His first appearance since the shocking assassination attempt on his Republican rival, former President Donald Trump, is set to unfold in the battleground state of Nevada. With the specter of political violence looming, Biden’s words are sure to reverberate across the country.

As Biden addresses Black supporters in Las Vegas on Tuesday, the stakes couldn’t be higher. He’s expected to draw sharp contrasts between himself and Trump, emphasizing the choices Americans face this November. Speaking at a convention of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Biden will underscore his administration’s unwavering support for Black voters, a cornerstone of the Democratic coalition.

In a bid to tackle Nevada’s skyrocketing housing costs, Biden will unveil new policies designed to bring relief to struggling residents. This critical issue will also be a focal point in his interview with Black Entertainment Television (BET) later that day. On Wednesday, Biden will shift his focus to Latino voters at the UnidosUS event, the nation’s largest Hispanic civil rights organization, signaling the importance of this demographic to the Democratic Party’s success.

Throughout these events, Biden’s calls for de-escalating political rhetoric will be a central theme. His plea for unity comes on the heels of a brutal attack at a Trump rally in Pennsylvania, which left a rallygoer dead and several others, including Trump, injured. In a rare and poignant Oval Office address, Biden stated, “Disagreement is inevitable in American democracy. But politics must never be a literal battlefield, and, God forbid, a killing field.”

The assassination attempt has forced Biden to walk a tightrope. He must balance his message of unity with a fierce determination to defeat Trump. This delicate act comes as Biden’s campaign grapples with dwindling poll numbers and the fallout from a lackluster debate performance last month. The shooting has added a new layer of complexity, with Biden’s team ramping up their criticism of Trump in hopes of stabilizing his candidacy.

Trump, via his social media platform, has echoed calls for national unity, albeit skeptically. He told the Washington Examiner that he had rewritten his Republican National Convention speech to emphasize solidarity in light of the attempt on his life. “I fear that this moment of detente won’t last very long,” remarked Claire Finkelstein, director of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law at the University of Pennsylvania. She warned that the candidates’ rhetoric could continue to incite followers prone to violence.

Despite growing calls from within his own party to step aside due to concerns about his age and mental acuity, Biden remains resolute. He insists that he is the Democrat best positioned to defeat Trump. Yet, the latest polling averages compiled by FiveThirtyEight paint a grim picture, with Trump leading by 4.7 percent in Nevada.

This dramatic return to the campaign trail comes at a perilous time for American democracy. The assassination attempt has only deepened the divide, making Biden’s calls for unity more critical than ever. As he addresses two pivotal voting blocs, Black and Latino Americans, Biden’s challenge is clear: to navigate a path forward amidst unprecedented political violence and an ever-fractured nation. The eyes of the world will be on him as he strives to unify a country teetering on the edge.

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Trump Names JD Vance as Running Mate in Bold Bid for 2024

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Donald Trump announces JD Vance, a once-fierce critic turned loyal supporter, as his running mate for the 2024 presidential race, marking a historic moment with the first millennial on a major-party ticket.

In a surprising yet strategic move, Donald Trump has selected Senator JD Vance of Ohio as his vice-presidential running mate for the 2024 election. Vance, who gained national attention with his 2016 memoir “Hillbilly Elegy,” transitioned from a Trump critic to one of his most ardent supporters. This marks a significant milestone as Vance becomes the first millennial to join a major-party ticket at a time when concerns about the age of political leaders are intensifying.

Trump announced his decision on Truth Social, praising Vance’s talents and dedication to the “Make America Great Again” agenda. Vance, 39, has been a vocal advocate for Trump’s policies, especially on trade, foreign policy, and immigration, since being elected to the Senate in 2022. Despite his relatively brief tenure in national politics, Vance’s alignment with Trump has been unwavering, solidifying his reputation as a key figure in the MAGA movement.

However, Vance’s political journey has not been without controversy. His recent criticism of President Joe Biden, blaming him for the attempted assassination of Trump at a rally, has sparked intense debate. Vance’s assertion that Biden’s rhetoric incited violence underscores the highly charged political atmosphere and the stakes of the upcoming election.

Vance’s selection is likely to energize Trump’s base, but it also brings challenges. The ticket now features two white men at a time when the Republican Party is striving to appeal to a more diverse electorate. Additionally, Vance’s initial opposition to Trump and his later transformation into a loyal ally highlight the complexities of political allegiances in the Trump era.

“Hillbilly Elegy” propelled Vance into the national spotlight, providing insights into the socio-economic struggles of Appalachian communities. His depiction of life in these regions resonated with many Americans but also faced criticism for oversimplifying complex issues like racism. Vance’s rise mirrors Trump’s unexpected ascent from reality TV star to President, and their alliance has become emblematic of the shifting dynamics within the Republican Party.

Vance’s military service, educational achievements, and professional endeavors add layers to his political persona. His transition from a Silicon Valley investor to a nonprofit founder aimed at addressing the opioid crisis reflects his multifaceted career. However, his nonprofit, Our Ohio Renewal, faced scrutiny for its limited impact and allegations of being a political front.

In the Senate, Vance has demonstrated a willingness to collaborate across party lines, particularly with Ohio’s Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown on issues like rail safety and economic development. This bipartisan approach may prove crucial as he steps into the national spotlight alongside Trump.

As the 2024 election approaches, the Trump-Vance ticket represents a blend of established MAGA principles and fresh political energy. The partnership underscores the enduring influence of Trump within the GOP and the evolving nature of political alliances. With Vance by his side, Trump aims to reclaim the presidency and shape the future of American politics.

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Elections

Rwandans Vote in Election Likely to Extend Kagame’s 30-Year Rule

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Rwandans Vote in Election Likely to Extend Kagame’s 30-Year Rule

Rwandans head to the polls with expectations high for President Paul Kagame to extend his 30-year rule. Despite opposition, Kagame’s grip on power remains strong amid both praise and criticism for his leadership.

Rwandans cast their votes on Monday in an election widely anticipated to extend the 30-year reign of President Paul Kagame. This election, like those before, is steeped in controversy and predictions of a near-certain victory for Kagame, who has ruled since ending the genocide in 1994.

The early morning saw eager voters, some lining up as early as 5 a.m. in Kigali. Among them was first-time voter Jean Claude Nkurunziza, who expressed unwavering support for Kagame, citing the president’s unparalleled leadership.

With 9.5 million registered voters in a country of 14 million, the election’s provisional results are expected later today. Despite the presence of opposition candidates Frank Habineza of the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda and independent Philippe Mpayimana, Kagame’s dominance remains unchallenged, a repeat of the 2017 election where he secured nearly 99% of the vote.

Habineza, while confident of improved performance, acknowledges the uphill battle. Kagame, now 66, first assumed power as vice president in 1994 and became president in 2000. His tenure has been marked by significant economic growth, but also severe criticism for his authoritarian tactics.

In 2015, a referendum lifted the two-term limit for the presidency, potentially allowing Kagame to stay in power until 2034. This move, while popular among his supporters, has drawn sharp criticism from human rights groups who highlight the government’s oppressive measures against dissent.

As voters cast their ballots, the backdrop of regional instability, particularly the M23 rebel conflict in eastern Congo, and Rwanda’s controversial involvement looms large. Amnesty International and other rights organizations have condemned Rwanda’s suppression of political opposition and civil liberties.

Kagame, addressing reporters on Saturday, justified his continued leadership by claiming a mandate from the Rwandan people. He asserted, “The ruling party and Rwandans have been asking me to stand for another mandate,” while also stating his personal readiness to step down if desired.

The election unfolds amid heightened concerns over the stability of Africa’s Great Lakes region and ongoing scrutiny of Kagame’s governance. As Rwanda votes, the world watches to see if the long-standing leader will indeed extend his grip on the nation’s future.

Rwanda – A Small Nation with Influence Beyond Its Borders

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Elections

In Photos: Trump whisked from stage at rally following apparent assassination attempt

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Former President Donald Trump narrowly escapes an assassination attempt at a Pennsylvania rally, raising concerns about political violence and sparking reactions from leaders including President Biden and former President Obama

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump arrives for a campaign rally, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pennsylvania.

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is covered by Secret Service agents after shots were fired.

Police snipers return fire after shots were fired while Donald Trump was speaking.

U.S. Secret Service agents respond President Donald Trump is surrounded on stage by other agents.

Former President Donald Trump is helped off the stage.

Donald Trump raises his fist as he is helped off the stage.

Donald Trump is surrounded by Secret Service agents as he is taken to a vehicle.

 

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Elections

Latest update on Trump rally shooting

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Donald Trump appeared to be the target of an assassination attempt as he spoke during a rally in Pennsylvania on Saturday, law enforcement officials said. The former president, his ear covered in blood from what he said was a gunshot, was quickly pulled away by Secret Service agents and his campaign said he was “fine.”

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