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Mukabaramba Alvera: “I will not join any coalition” even after elections

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Kigali: Female presidential candidate Mukabaramba Alvera says she gave up her votes to President Paul Kagame in 2003, but is not planning to do anything like come Monday– even with any other competing party.

Mukabaramba famously pulled out of the 2003 presidential elections a day before polling day and threw her support behind the ruling RPF. The 50-year-old senator who chairs the Party for Progress and Concord also sits on the Political and Good Governance Commission in the Senate.

In her latest defense of her candidacy, Mukabaramba says she in the race until when the results will be declared, and bluntly makes it clear that she will not go into coalition with any party. She makes the declaration in the following interview with French radio RFI.

She was first asked whether she thought she had recovered her credibility.

I think that supporting another candidate during campaigning, joining a coalition with them does amount to the loss of credibility. There are reasons why a political party decides to join a coalition during elections. We had campaigned till the end, and the party decided to support Paul Kagame because his manifesto and ours were very similar and we threw in our lot behind him to stop certain candidates who campaigned on ethnic and divisionist issues. That's why we supported Paul Kagame and the RPF. We did not lose our credibility. But this time, I will stay till the end and will not join any coalition.

Why are you standing in the election when there are so few differences between your movement's manifesto and that of the ruling RPF party.

In a democracy there are different parties campaigning, there are different manifestoes. it's up to the people to choose. So you cannot say nothing is at stake. It's the voters who will decide.

what do you bring as a woman in this campaign?

I cannot stand as the woman candidate. I am the candidate of a political party. And women, just like men, will choose other candidates. I am not here so that I get the female vote, but to prove that there is equality between men and women in Rwanda. I am not the woman candidate standing for women.


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