President Paul Kagame, main opposition party leader Frank Habineza and independent candidate Philippe Mpayimana have been cleared by Rwanda’s National Electoral Commission (NEC) as candidates in the August 4 presidential elections.
The following have been approved as candidates as they fulfill all requirements: Frank Habineza, Philippe Mpayimana and Paul Kagame.— NEC Rwanda (@RwandaElections) July 7, 2017
Three other independent candidates including the only female aspirant, 35-year-old Diane Shima Rwigara were disqualified by the NEC for not meeting the requirements as candidates.
The NEC announced on Friday citing reasons why each disqualified candidate failed to make it on the final list.
Some of the signatures belong to deceased people; she also used documents belonging to the political party PS Imberakuri while gathering signatures, which puts her integrity in disrepute.
For Diane Shima Rwigara, NEC Chairman, Kalisa Mbanda said she “did not raise the 600 signatures required. She has 572 signatures and used voters cards which are yet to be obtained by their owners.”
The NEC added that she conspired with one of their officials in “forging the signatures of 26 voters”.
Diane Nshimyimana Rwigara conspired with Joseph Uwingabire a NEC Volunteer in Mbogo, Rulindo District in forging the signatures of 26 voters— NEC Rwanda (@RwandaElections) July 7, 2017
“Some of the signatures belong to deceased people; she also used documents belonging to the political party PS Imberakuri while gathering signatures, which puts her integrity in disrepute,” he added.
This revelation follows Ms Rwigara’s statement on Wednesday saying that she had resubmitted her nomination with double the number of signatures required.
“Today I submitted additional NEC requirements including 120 signatures from 11 districts. Which brings the total number of signatures collected and submitted to 1,105 (almost double the NEC requirement of 600),” she tweeted.
Her journey to be a presidential candidate has ended, likewise independent candidates Gilbert Mwenedata and Fred Sekikubo Barafinda who submitted 522 and 362 signatures respectively, the NEC said.
Electoral campaigns will begin on July 14 followed by the elections on August 3 in the diaspora and August 4 in Rwanda.