27 March 2006

Rwanda: NUR Gets New Guild Boss

Kigali — The General Association of the National University of Rwanda (AGEUNR) Wednesday March, 22 elected Blaise Pascal Remesha the new students' Guild boss.

To head the 296-student body Remesha got two hundred votes, beating his three opponents Ahmed Buregeya and Emmanuel Kabera who tied at forty eight votes and, Ernest Kubwimana, who got zero votes.

Before elections the NUR Rector Prof. Chrysologue Karangwa met the members of the Electoral College and urged them to vote for people of integrity, who wouldn't abuse power.

"Those who think they are championing their own interests shouldn't run," Karangwa said and vowed to stump out any corruption tendencies in the guild.

He also expressed dissatisfaction with the male-dominated race, adding that it was not in tandem with the Constitution that among other issues provides for the participation of women in decision making.

"I wasn't happy when I found out that AGEUNR candidates are only men" he said and asked the female students to avoid shying away from responsibility.

"Women should stop being shy" Prof. Karangwa said.

Fair elections

Eric Kamanzi, an electoral official said the elections were free and fair. "Elections were really fair beyond our expectations," Kamanzi said of the elections in which a candidate, for the first time, got zero votes, while another, male candidate Djuma Sumbiri, contested for the gender post.

Many students including the Campaign Manager of Ernest Kubwimana, the guild contestant who got zero votes, also confirmed the fairness of the elections.

"What is obvious is that these elections were fair because if they were based on any sentiments, our candidate would have got at least some votes as we had friends among the voters," Kubwimana's Campaign Manager said, but declined to divulge his names.

"These elections were really fair; Remesha Blaise had a clear agenda and he was elected because of that," one of the students said shortly after the results.

However, the students said that some of the problems the new executive committee will have to tackle immediately include the delay of students' 'boom' (bourse), the 'poor feeding' at the Campus Restaurant and corruption.

The eleven-man Guild includes Blaise Pascal Remesha (President) Vice President Moses Mutabazi, General Secretary Prime Kalinda, Treasurer Vincent Ngirikiringo, Patrick Nimubona (Security) and Seleman Ntawuyirushintege (Production).

Others are: Esperance Uwikeza (Gender), Bertin Sitini (Public Relations and Protocol) and David Bayingana (Sports and Culture), J Paul Ndayisabye (Social affairs) and Ferdinand Mbonaruza (Information).

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